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SYLLABUS

Silicon Valley educator and mother Esther Wojcicki shares her syllabus for raising successful leaders

Published Last updated This article is more than 2 years old.

Esther Wojcicki has three daughters; one heads YouTube, one founded 23andMe, and one teaches pediatrics at UCSF. In her new book How to Raise Successful People, she outlines five points of focus for parents and educators: trust, respect, independence, collaboration, and kindness, or TRICK.

As part of a members-only series with Quartz, Wojcicki compiled a list of resources for raising successful leaders, along with her reasons for choosing them.

Books

“I recommend these books because they all show different but compatible aspects of TRICK and show that it is effective. When you read these books, you will see that the concepts are the same. It is helpful to read other experts and see what they are thinking. TRICK is also desperately needed in business and government.”

  • How to Raise an Adult, by Julie Lythcott-Haims (2016)
  • The Happiness Advantage, by Shawn Achor (2010)
  • The Coddling of the American Mind, by Jonathan Haidt, Greg Lukianoff, Penguin Audio (2018)
  • Factfulness, by Hans Rosling (2018)
  • The Purpose Driven Life, by Rick Warren (2013)
  • Giving It All Away…and Getting It All Back Again, by David Green (2017)
  • Fascism: A Warning, by Madeleine Albright (2018)
  • The Price of Privilege, by Madeline Levine (2009)
  • The Blessing of a Skinned Knee, by Wendy Mogel (2001)
  • Measure What Matters, by John Doerr (2017)
  • How Why Anything Means Everything, by Dov Seidman (2007)
  • Man’s Search for Meaning, by Viktor Frankl (1946)
  • The Prince, by Niccolò Machiavelli (1532)

Plays

“I picked Shakespeare because there is such wisdom in all his plays. Schools should teach at least one Shakespeare play.”

  • Hamlet, by William Shakespeare
  • Macbeth, by William Shakespeare
  • Merchant of Venice, by William Shakespeare

Films

“They all show revolutionary teaching and the impact it can have on students lives. Teachers impact student’s lives in many ways. These teachers are all role models for educators and parents.”

  • Freedom Writers (2007)
  • School of Rock (2003)
  • The Ron Clark Story (2006)
  • Precious (2009)
  • Dangerous Minds (1995)
  • The Class (2008)

Websites

Tech Savvy Mama

“This is my former student Leticia Barr and I love her advice and what she is doing. Very proud of her and her husband Jim Barr, who was also my former student! She started years ago!”

Common Sense Media

“A MUST for all parents. It helps you sort out what is good for kids to watch and play on electronic devices and in the movies. VERY important website for all parents.”

Music

“We all need something for our soul. I also love pop music. For me, it’s poetry with sound and passion.”

Free to be You and Me, by Marlo Thomas (1972)

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