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Raising a Socially Successful Child

Paperback / ISBN-13: 9781399729314

Price: £18.99

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We all want our to children to learn the social skills they need to thrive. Yet many kids are struggling to connect, often with no apparent reason why. What with the steep rise in screen time and the social learning lost to Covid quarantines and school closures, many kids haven’t had sufficient opportunity to learn all the rules of nonverbal behaviour.

In Raising a Socially Successful Child, Dr. Stephen Nowicki reveals how to identify the non-verbal areas where a child might be struggling, and equips readers with a set of simple exercises for helping any child learn how to:

– Follow the rhythm of conversations
– Respect the boundaries of personal space
– Learn to express and read emotions in facial expressions and body language
– Understand the difference between appropriate and inappropriate touch
– Sense a person’s mood based on their tone of voice

Drawing on decades of research, as well as dozens of case studies, Raising a Socially Successful Child is a much-needed, practical guide to helping children master the non-verbal skills they need to succeed in life.


Much of human social interaction takes place in a 'hidden dimension' of nonverbal communication. Nowicki brings this hidden dimension out into the open, with the specific goal of helping young children who struggle with social relationships. He does this using academic research, detailed portraits of individual children, and concrete advice based on extensive clinical experience. This is a terrifically engaging and helpful book that all parents and educators of young children should read
Michael Tomasello, developmental and comparative psychologist, professor of psychology, Duke University
Nowicki describes a current crisis - children who cannot form connections-but suggests a path away from danger. It's a program for every adult with a child in their life, a book of hard truths and hope."
Sherry Turkle, MIT Professor, author of Alone Together, Reclaiming Conversation, and The Empathy Diaries
This highly readable book blends clinical insight with science to help parents understand how nonverbal communication impacts every aspect of their child's welfare-and gives parents clear guidance on how to observe and remedy problems their child might be having in the social arena. The simple and fun exercises Dr. Nowicki proposes reflect his many years as a clinical psychologist and researcher. This book teaches parents what to look for and how to address weaknesses in their child's nonverbal communication skills. Many is the adult who will read this book and wish it had existed for their own parents to read!
Judith A. Hall, University Distinguished Professor, Emerita, Department of Psychology, Northeastern University
Raising a Socially Successful Child bridges the gap that too often exists between scientific findings and real-life behavior. As a result, the content of this book provides a vital, easy way to understand resources for parents and teachers. Dr. Nowicki really knows children and what they need to be happy and successful during these trying times. I am eager to take what he has written and put it into my own work with children, parents and teachers so they can have access to his incredible insights
Meryl Lipton, MD, PhD, Director Emeritus, Rush Neurobehavioral Center
Dr. Nowicki's book provides an eye-opening take on why some children have difficulty with relationships and how encouraging them to relate to others in NON-verbal ways, can have a profound effect on their lives . . . an important read for anyone who has a child, works with a child, or loves a child
Susan Darrow, chief executive officer of Music Together
This is a fantastic book, which reveals so much that we often fail to recognise about how we communicate without using words. My only regret is that this book was not available when my children were growing up, and even more so to inform my teaching strategies subsequently. It is an important contribution to our understanding, written with flare and very easy to read
Jean Golding, OBE, FMedSci, Emeritus Professor of Paediatric & Perinatal Epidemiology, University of Bristol
The Covid crisis has taught us how much we remain primates. We crave physical closeness and face-to-face nonverbal exchange. In a lively account based on his rich experience as psychotherapist, Stephen Nowicki teaches us how to enhance children's skills to connect with others
Frans de Waal, author of Mama’s Last Hug
Another brilliant book from a true master of facilitating children's social skill development . . . A must read for any parent, grandparent, and teacher who wants to do whatever they can to foster the social success of children they care about
William Stixrud, PhD, clinical neuropsychologist and co-author of The Self-Driven Child and What Do You Say?
Nowicki's book is a delight. The writing is simple, clear, and enjoyable to read. The message is so important that every parent, everyone who is planning to be a parent, and every teacher should read it. The nonverbal dance between a child and the rest of his world is rarely explicitly noticed but shapes that child's self and success, and this book puts a bright and desperately needed spotlight on it.
Michael S. A. Graziano, professor of psychology and neuroscience, Princeton University
Dr. Stephen Nowicki...sheds light on the difficulties inherent in learning nonverbal language skill needed for leading successful lives. Parents, educations, and practitioners will value learning the specific areas that need to be taught and Raising a Socially Successful Child offers ways to successfully do so. I highly recommend this valuable gem of a book.
Dr. Jessica Broitman, author, researcher, and psychoanalyst