The Natural Child

by Jan Hunt


Reviewed by Roberta Waters




“Trust children.”  That is the essence of the message parenting counselor Jan Hunt,  hopes those reading her book will take with them.  Ms. Hunt uses attachment parenting as her style of interacting with children -- and points out that while many think attachment or empathetic parenting are new age ideas, they are actually ages old.

        To get to the point of trusting our children, Ms. Hunt begins by explaining the need to see children as real people, deserving of our attention.  She then encourages the reader to see life through the eyes of their children so that we may better understand them.  Once a parent gains this understanding, getting a child to conduct themselves the way you would like them to behave, becomes easier because the adult will know what motivates the child.


How does one begin on this path of understanding?  Gentle birth, long term breastfeeding, family bed, rewarding good behavior.  Bad behavior by children is dealt with in a way that validates the child but does not humiliate or distract the child from the issue.  Ms. Hunt gives numerous examples of how to deal with common frustrating situations, for example, check-out line tantrums.  Ms. Hunt includes a section for those in regular and home schools.  Additionally, she discusses what to do if the child has a “learning disability.”


Her common sense, gentle approach to interacting with children will appeal to those who believe in the need to guide our children in a peaceful way.  This book is easy reading and a treasure for those wanting another way to parent and wish to do so without manipulations that teeter between punitive or reward. 

The Natural Child
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