Your Child's Strengths
A Guide for Parents and Teachers
By Jenifer Fox, M.Ed.
In YOUR CHILD’S STRENGTHS: A Guide for Parents and Teachers, educator and author Jenifer Fox, M.Ed. believes that we must focus on how our children’s individual strengths create success and build on this foundation to help them thrive in school and in life.
Fox clearly and passionately shows parents and teachers how to identify a child’s strengths based on their actions, how to encourage those strengths once they’ve been identified, and how to help kids implement the strengths they reveal. YOUR CHILD’S STRENGTHS has three parts. Part 1 describes current ideas and practices that contribute to children’s feelings of weakness. Part 2 explains what strengths are, focusing on three particular zones, including: Activity Strengths, the tasks that make kids feel engaged and energized; Relationship Strengths, the things students do with others that make them feel valued and competent; and Learning Strengths, the unique ways we all approach and understand new information. Part 3 offers a variety of practical workbook exercises that parents, teachers or children can use to discover and develop their strengths. This workbook section also outlines Fox’s Affinities Program—a four year high school curriculum designed by Fox to create a strengths community in schools.
With her twenty-five years of experience as an educator, Fox has a personal understanding of what struggling students go through, as she herself once wore those shoes as a teen who nearly flunked out of high school, but later went on to earn a B.S. in communications from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, an M.A. in English from Middlebury College, and an M.Ed. in school administration from Harvard University. In 2007 Fox traveled across the US as the educational adviser on Marcus Buckingham’s Go Put Your Strengths to Work book tour, appearing on the Today show and speaking to crowds about the Affinities Program.
Discovering and learning how to implement each child’s individual strengths, and how to put them all together, is vital not only to a student’s success in school, but, more importantly, to success in life outside of school, and in our ever-changing economy. YOUR CHILD’S STRENGTHS is a user-friendly guide for parents, teachers, and administrators that will improve individual performance and provide an indispensable road map for young people.
"This is a brilliant, innovative, enormously practical, and hugely important work. Where positive psychology and strength-based philosophies usually stumble, this book soars, namely, in practical application. If teachers and parents would all read this and implement its suggestions, our broken educational system would be fixed in no time. Truly, this book could change the world." --Edward Hallowell, M.D., author of Driven to Distraction: Recognizing and Coping with Attention Deficit Disorder from Childhood to Adulthood.
"Jenifer Fox has vision, passion, intelligence, and experience. All show in YOUR CHILD’S STRENGTHS, which contains a wealth of practical ideas for parents and educators who want to encourage among children the strengths that make possible the good life." --Christopher Peterson, Professor of Psychology, University of Michigan, and author of A Primer in Positive Psychology.
About the Author:
Jenifer Fox, M.Ed., has worked in day and boarding schools, single-sex and coed schools, as a teacher and administrator for twenty-five years. She holds a B.S. in communications from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and M.A. in English from Middlebury College, and a M.Ed. in school administration from Harvard University. She lives in New York City.