Sunday, February 20, 2011

Tiger Mother > Helicopter Mom

Amy Chua has gotten a lot of press, negative and otherwise, about her book “Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother.” I stand firmly in the ‘support’ camp.

See the NYT review here .

If I had to choose between being a ‘Tiger Mother’ or a ‘Helicopter Mom’, I’d choose the Tiger every time. Why? A Tiger Mother is trying to nudge her child, albeit a bit aggressively, to excellence through the child’s own doings. Practice longer! Work harder! Expect more of yourself! All signs of good parenting. Conversely, a Helicopter Mom is hovering on the fringe, questioning the child’s teachers, coaches and friends. Why so much homework? Why is the teacher so critical? Why did your coach do that? We’ve all heard that in Chinese culture teachers are revered and respected. Not true here in the U.S. I am teaching Isabelle that her teachers are there to help her, to lead her down the path of enlightenment. And I want her to know that she has the power and the knowledge to make her life better through perseverance and hard work. But am I a total Tiger Mother? Not so much. I wouldn't forbid being a part of the school play or musical and if Isabelle plays any musical instrument with aptitude, well I'll be proud. I am probably more of a 'Tigger Mother', because sometimes, ya just gotta bounce. On the bed. ;)

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