Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen Book Summary - Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen Book explained in key points
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Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen summary

Michelle Icard

The Essential Conversations You Need to Have with Your Kids Before They Start High School

4.1 (87 ratings)
21 mins

Brief summary

'Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen' by Michelle Icard is a guide for parents and caregivers to help teens navigate important life discussions. It offers practical tips and tools to build effective communication and create a strong relationship with your teenager.

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    Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen
    Summary of 7 key ideas

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    Learning a new lingo will help you talk to your tween.

    Children and parents share a special language. 

    For many people, the cries of infants are little more than noise. Parents, though, can detect the subtle differences that signal that their child needs to be fed, or have its diaper changed. This relationship lasts from birth until the age of around eleven, when something changes. 

    As kids set out on the journey toward adulthood, they pull away from their parents and begin building their own identities. Suddenly, parents and children have less in common, and the old language breaks down. Which means that, as a parent, you need to find a different way of communicating. 

    The key message in this blink is: Learning a new lingo will help you talk to your tween. 

    Shared languages bind people together. Tweens, though, don’t want to be bound into the family group – they want to explore the world for themselves. No wonder, then, that communication becomes difficult at this age. 

    This becomes frustrating for parents, as surly silences start to replace conversations. Often, parents are tempted to turn the volume up and talk at, rather than with, their kids. But that only leads to a stormy cycle of angry lectures and teary tantrums. 

    So what’s the alternative? Well, it’s important to remember that your tween’s desire for autonomy is a healthy and normal part of growing up. Plenty of evidence suggests that kids who don’t establish a strong sense of self in adolescence are much more likely to end up in toxic or codependent relationships later on in life. Put differently, you want your tween to become more independent!

    Keeping that in mind will help you avoid a common mistake, the “shut it down” approach, which is all about keeping kids out of trouble. This strategy comes from a place of love, but it also denies your tween something important – the chance to make mistakes. Yes, greater independence means your kids are going to encounter new risks and occasionally screw up. But how can they learn to make smart decisions if you don’t let them make any decisions? 

    The simple fact is, kids need to have experiences – good and bad. There’s just no getting around that. But that doesn’t mean you have to watch helplessly from the sidelines. Your job is to help your child evaluate, process, and reflect on what works and what doesn’t. That can only happen once you learn how to talk to your tween. 

    Quote: “Keeping kids safe is all about having the right conversations at the right time.”

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    What is Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen about?

    Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen (2020) tackles the thorny subject of communicating with tweens – those adolescents between the ages of ten and fourteen who are beginning to pull away from their parents and close down lines of communication. This is the age at which “big” topics like sexuality, money, and life choices are more important than ever. But it’s also the age at which having a conversation with your child is harder than ever before. So what can parents do? Well, it’s time to learn a new way of talking with, and not at, your tween. 

    Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen Review

    Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen (2021) by Michelle Icard is an insightful book that offers crucial guidance for parents navigating the complex world of teenage conversations. Here's why this book is worth reading:

    • It provides practical strategies that help parents foster open and meaningful discussions with their teenagers, ensuring a strong parent-child relationship.
    • With its real-life examples and relatable anecdotes, the book offers valuable insights into the challenges and experiences teenagers face, making it relatable and relevant.
    • The down-to-earth approach of the author makes this book engaging and relatable, guaranteeing an enjoyable and informative reading experience for parents.

    Best quote from Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen

    Forget about the tech and focus on basic human behaviors you want your child to follow.

    —Michelle Icard
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    Who should read Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen?

    • Relationship-builders struggling to talk with their tweens
    • Worriers who want the best for their kids
    • Parents of younger children preparing for the next step

    About the Author

    Michelle Icard is a member of NBC New Learn and the Today show’s parenting team. She is the author of Middle School Makeover and a regular contributor to publications including the Washington Post, Christian Science Monitor, Time magazine, and the Chicago Tribune. Her two-tier leadership curriculum for middle schoolers, consisting of Athena's Path and Hero's Pursuit, have been implemented at schools across the United States.

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    Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen FAQs 

    What is the main message of Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen?

    The main message of Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen is to guide parents in having important conversations with their teenagers.

    How long does it take to read Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen?

    The reading time for Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen can vary. However, the Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen a good book? Is it worth reading?

    Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen is a helpful read for parents. It provides valuable insights and practical advice for navigating conversations with teenagers.

    Who is the author of Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen?

    The author of Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen is Michelle Icard.

    What to read after Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen?

    If you're wondering what to read next after Fourteen Talks by Age Fourteen, here are some recommendations we suggest:
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