Christine Carter is a sociologist and happiness expert at UC-Berkeley's Greater Good Science Center, an interdisciplinary research center that translates the study of happiness, resilience, and emotional intelligence for the public. Best known for her science-based parenting advice, Carter blogs regularly for the Greater Good, Huffington Post, and Psychology Today websites. Her favorite work is teaching her online parenting class, which she does for a global audience.

"The most important work you and I will ever do
will be within the walls of our own homes."
— Harold B. Lee

Carter sets out in this paperback based on scientific research to translate some of the findings from psychology, sociology, and neuroscience for laypersons who are parents. She also uses illustrative materials from her own experiences as a single mother of two daughters. Carter claims that what she has written represents "the intersection of my brain and my heart."

"Happiness is a continuous creative activity."

— Baba Amte

Without much fanfare, Carter plunges into the 10 key steps that undergird the art and science of raising happy kids:

• Put on your own oxygen mask first.
• Build a village.
• Expect effort and enjoyment, not perfection.
• Choose gratitude, forgiveness, and optimism.
• Raise their emotional intelligence.
• Form happiness habits.
• Teach self-discpline.
• Enjoy the present moment.
• Rig their environment for happiness.
• Eat dinner together.

"Nothing has a stronger influence
psychologically . . . on children than the
unlived life of the parent."
— Carl Jung

There is a rich deposit of wisdom on these pages as Carter shares the necessity for a dinnertime routine that works, the challenges of modeling kindness, the perils of perfectionism, the science of happy endings, and why play is so important. Parents may want to sign up for her newsletter at