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ToddlerCalm: A guide for calmer toddlers and happier parents [Paperback]

Sarah Ockwell-Smith
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)
RRP: 13.99
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Book Description

3 Oct 2013
Sarah Ockwell-Smith, founder of BabyCalm and ToddlerCalm, is passionate about 'gentle' parenting. Her mission is to let parents know that there are other ways to cope with a toddler apart from putting him or her on the naughty step or resorting to controlled crying. This book will fill a gap in the market, helping parents enjoy their toddlers, understand the limitations of current popular toddler parenting methods such as sticker charts and time out, and to have the confidence to ignore the current mainstream 'experts' and parent their own child with trust and empathy. Chapters include: Why toddlers are not mini-adults; the importance of night-time parenting; coping with a picky eater; communication - toddler style; avoiding difficult situations; the importance of unconditional love and why you don't need to be permissive to parent respectfully.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Piatkus (3 Oct 2013)
  • Language: Unknown
  • ISBN-10: 0349401055
  • ISBN-13: 978-0349401058
  • Product Dimensions: 15.3 x 23.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,387 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Sarah is a mother of four who initially studied Psychology at University. After a five year career in Pharmaceutical research she retrained as a Homeopath, HypnoBirthing Teacher and Doula - an eclectic mix of scientific and holistic viewpoints! Since then Sarah has worked with over 1000 parents; helping them to settle into life as a new family and to cope with the challenges of raising their children through the toddler and later tween years. Sarah specialises in gentle parenting methods, particularly when it comes to sleep and coping with difficult behaviour. She blogs at and writes for

Product Description


I welcome this book as a sensitive antidote to the alternatives. It is not advocating permissive or authoritarian care, it is a paean to the glorious fun and joy which can result from understanding your toddler, seeing it from their point of view, and then gently nudging them towards maturity (Oliver James)

Everything you say in the book really resonates with the way we hope we will parent (Dame Sarah Storey)

I like the fact that ToddlerCalm is written in a non-judgemental way. It offers support and guidance to parents and I find myself dipping in and out of it for advice and reassurance. I can really relate to the personal stories and love the quotes throughout.

The section on Avoiding Difficult Situations got me thinking about all of the times I dreaded 'circle time' at the various parent/toddler groups I went to. If I had read this book first I wouldn't have felt the need to persevere and my toddler and I would have happily pottered at home instead of feeling we always had to be so busy!

(Nell McAndrew, model and marathon runner)

Book Description

A new, empowering guide for parents of 1-4 year olds, based on the successful ToddlerCalm parenting classes which aim to help parents confidently enjoy the first years with their child.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must for understanding toddlers 25 Nov 2013
I've just finished this and it's a real eye opener. I read BabyCalm and attended the classes, and after a year I feel like a pretty confident parent of a baby. With the toddler years approaching I felt the need to be prepared, so this is the first book I went for. What it does first and foremost is provide facts, not opinions or anecdotes, but actual scientifically verified facts about toddlers; how they are developing, why they do what they do, and how we as parents can help them along.

The science on offer is broken down and explained in a way anyone can understand, but that's not to say it's "dumbed down", it isn't. It's explained clearly and succinctly so anyone can read it, understand it, absorb it and put it to use in your life. Most importantly, it makes you think! It also, again very clearly, is lay out what is normal for a toddler; it may not be societies idea of a 'good' toddler (i.e. compliant, quiet etc) but it's just normal. Reading that is incredibly reassuring and alleviates all kinds of parental stress and anxiety.

What it doesn't do it 1) claim to know your child 2) give you a list of do's and don'ts, which if you can't achieve makes you feel like a failure and 3) set up your toddler and some kind of adversary (the impression I get from many 'child experts') who's out to ruin your life.

If you have a toddler, get it. If you have a baby who's around 1, get it. Arm yourselves with knowledge, and knowledge derived from science not habit and authority.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The ultimate reassurance 6 Dec 2013
Every parent has times when they doubt what they're doing is the right thing for their child. Either because the child doesn't respond positively or other people are saying what should and shouldn't be done. Parents just need non-judgemental, reassuring advice that isn't constrained by the "norm" of society.
And this is it. It's just the paper version of what all parents feel and know deep down but has been suppressed to varying degrees by society's expectations, interfering relatives and naughty-step wielding tv nannies.
Reading the book helps you to put yourself in your toddler's shoes, learn to accept "tantrums" and how to deal with "bad behaviour" (by not thinking of it as bad behaviour).
It's well-written, full of real-life examples and has a handy way to remember the different aspects of dealing with situations.
I wouldn't say it has changed the way I parent, rather it has reassured me that I'm normal, my toddler is normal and we will muddle along happily in the hope of creating a confident, independent and happy child. Bring on the next instalment, Teenagecalm?
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars every parent needs to read this. 22 Aug 2014
This book is absolutely fantastic. It has helped me to understand my 2 year old's behaviour far more than anything else. I want to be an understanding and compassionate parent that allows my child to explore, experiment and develop while also still laying boundaries and structure. I sometimes struggle with patience like all parents I am sure. The more I understand about how toddlers develop and how much they need and depend on us to develop properly the more patient I hope to become. This book does exactly this. Sarah discusses paediatric neuro psychology, cites examples from influential child psychologists as well as normal every day parenting examples. She offers strategies to tackle challenging toddler behaviour and constantly reminds us of how much they need and rely on us, and the fact that they are not manipulating us and do not need to be "tamed". Great book. Every parent should read this.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply great 4 Oct 2013
An excellent alternative parenting guide to conventional, authoritarian parenting methods. Highly recommended for any parent who wishes to parent with compassion and respect.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I would highly recommend reading this book 11 Aug 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Fascinating read for anyone struggling with their parenting method while dealing with a toddler. I wasn't sure about introducing the "naughty step" to my 23 mth lg's tantrums. But having read this book, her behavior makes so much sense to me and has given me real understanding. Society/parents/in-laws put pressure on you to discipline your "unruly" toddler. But a part of me felt it was too early and I didn't agree with their reasoning. I've started to get down to eye level with my toddler and ask her what the problem is - it might take quite a while for her to try to explain to me, as she needs to get past being unable to control her "big emotions". But things are defintely getting easier. I would highly recommend reading this book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing 13 Jan 2014
By aliyw
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I'm so sick of being told my toddler is testing me or trying it on with me.
If you try to read other so called baby expert books they seem to make out your toddler is the enemy, who needs to be controlled and tamed.
So reading ToddlerCalm is the most refreshing and welcomed book with regards to learning to help shape and understand your child.
Toddlercalm has made me really think about what my child is going through, how I treat him and how what I do now will affect the person he become.
I cant recommend this book enough.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must Buy for anyone with Toddlers 18 Dec 2013
By BettyB
Amazing and informative book that helps develop an understanding of why Toddlers act the way they do. It also gives parents techniques to help them build loving, calm relationships with their children. 10/10
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Very helpful
Really found this book helful when dealing with toddler 'tantrums'. I don't agree with naughty steps or time out so was looking for an alternative approach. Read more
Published 16 days ago by rachy
5.0 out of 5 stars READ this if you have a phase of the terrible 2's
essential reading to maintain sanity
Published 23 days ago by miss emma l french
5.0 out of 5 stars Very helpful book with some great techniques for avoiding difficult...
Whilst many people may scoff at the ToddlerCalm method of parenting, I for one can 100% confirm that the techniques in this book are useful and have helped us to better understand... Read more
Published 1 month ago by katyp83
5.0 out of 5 stars calmer me calmer child happier all round
At last a book from your toddlers perspective, and really insightful, it challenges current 'wisdom'. Read more
Published 3 months ago by none
1.0 out of 5 stars Not that practical or realistic
Very disappointed. Was looking for practical advice on toddlers and was encouraged by the other positive reviews but this book seems to take the stance that the child is in charge... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Cara
5.0 out of 5 stars fantastic
A brilliant insight into a toddlers world and practical, reasonable advice. The best book I ever bought on raising toddlers.
Published 3 months ago by emma corkery
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it!
I've read a few books along these lines which were good but were a little indepth with the psychological side of things. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Penny Pronin
5.0 out of 5 stars Great buy
Fab book. Bought the kindle version and refer to it often. If you ever get the chance to go on the toddler calm course do it. It's also fab!
Published 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Useful and enlightening
I have a one year old daughter but wanted to get ahead of the game on toddler-hood as I don't particularly enjoy being the 'bad guy'. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Mrs Emma D Trundle
5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended for any parent of a toddler :-)
An excellent book, i needed advice for my toddler as i have a new baby and older sibling too....i am not keen on supernanny books, books written by so called experts whom recommend... Read more
Published 4 months ago by michelle greenwood
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