Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Po Bronson at Grattan

Join us on Monday May 17 at 6:30 to hear Po Bronson speak at Grattan about his new book, NurtureShock: New Thinking About Children. This event is free and open to the public.

NurtureShock is a groundbreaking collaboration between award-winning science journalists Po Bronson and Ashley Merryman. They argue that when it comes to children, we’ve mistaken good intentions for good ideas. With impeccable storytelling and razorsharp analysis, Bronson and Merryman demonstrate that many of modern society’s strategies for nurturing children are in fact backfiring—because key twists in the science have been overlooked.

Nothing like a parenting manual, the authors’ work is an insightful exploration of themes and issues that transcend children’s (and adults’) lives: intelligence, racism, civility and aggression, honesty and deception, morality and kindness, peer pressure, risk-taking, and the growth of family relationships. NurtureShock is a fun, fascinating, and challenging book—unlike anything you’ve ever seen before.

Grattan School is located at 165 Grattan Street in Cole Valley. Doors open at 6:30 for purchase of books, coffee, and sweets. Copies of NurtureShock will be available for purchase courtesy of The Booksmith. 20% of your purchase benefits Grattan!


  1. The school has done several speakers nights before with authors and other people in the public eye. I am assuming this is part of that speaker's series. I actually wanted to read the book, but the reserve for it at the public library was huge when it first came out. This is a free event so I am thinking of going.

  2. If you look at his blog you'll see that he is speaking at schools all around the city/country promoting his book. It's quite common. No, there is no connection to Grattan. He was at many of the Independent schools and he was at Peabody just a few weeks ago. The other schools just didn't invite the public or charged a ticket price and used it as a fundraiser. Not sure how organizing a FREE speaker event aimed at parents and inviting the public is tacky either for him or the school?

  3. Tacky? What a bizarre comment.

  4. Po Bronson is a San Francisco resident and his kids attend
    Adda Clevenger. He's a good speaker!

  5. I saw Po Bronson speak at the Co-Op preschool night and it was very entertaining and taught me something about children interactions.

    I would go again, but I already have something planned that night.

    Don't buy the book! Wait for it from the library.

    The school may raise funds by having a bake sale.. again feel free to not purchase anything.

    BUT GO, enjoy, laugh and learn.

  6. His book would probably be of interest to an audience of the school's and the neighborhood’s parents. I pay to hear speakers of his caliber at City Arts and Lecture. This is free and I am not required to buy the book. I think it is great that Grattan uses its facilities to be a bit of a community center for the neighborhood with this and other lectures and events. If more of the SFUSD schools would open themselves up for community events and meetings there would be more support for the public schools in general.

  7. Po Bronson is a nationally know author. Having him speak about child development or whatever for free at an SF public school is a great thing.

    And it is directly relevant to this blog's purpose : the education of our SF children.

    The cynical comments about this (e.g. tacky, chance to sell books...) are disturbing and unwarranted. If Po Bronson speaking for free evokes a negative reaction in you, I can't imagine how long the list of things that rile you up is. You had the tacky part right except it was your comment that was tacky.

  8. I just read the book last week and it was great, waited only a few days on the library waitlist, so it's definitely available now.

  9. I was just at a lecture at the JCC (paid for it!) from a researcher who just wrote a book about parenting and raising moral kids. He noted Po Bronson's book as one of the good resources out there.

    Po Bronson is a good writer with some great information. I always thought Grattan's speaker events like this are a brilliant idea for helping families get great information.

    I agree with the poster above - I'm amazed at the sour grapes on this listserve sometimes.

  10. I would absolutely pay to hear Po Bronson and think it's wonderful to have a discussion about child development issues at a public school. For those with doubts, read his book!! The essay on Kindergarten testing would probably start a lively discussion on this blog. I say GO GRATTAN!

  11. I highly recommend the book, and plan/hope to attend. I didn't realize until recently that he was an SF resident. If you're on the fence, read his blog. He and his coauthor explain their philosophy (peer reviewed studies over ideology), and discuss much of what's examined more extensively in the book. One item that really interested me was the success of a program called tools of the mind. Maybe the SFUSD can look into adopting that program here in some form.