“Growing Pains” is a book written to help teachers and parents understand the adolescents in their care. The author, Alex Trenoweth, is an astrological researcher as well as a practising secondary school teacher.
I had the title of my book “Growing Pains” in my head for a long time before I actually wrote the book. “Jupiter” for growth and “Saturn” for discipline, I thought “Growing Pains”was the perfect title for a book on the astrology of adolescence!
I had always wanted to write a book but I didn’t want to write a junky Sun Sign book that would be worthless after the year had passed. I also didn’t want to write a book for beginning astrologers because there’s already enough of those. Wanting to do something unique, I also wanted to write a book that helped readers understand themselves better so they could help the children they love and care for.
I wanted to bring astrology to education.
With these things in mind, I wrote “Growing Pains” during the academic year 2012/2013. Teaching secondary school full time in London and I having additional responsibilities in child protection, I was very busy with my job. But I dutifully wrote two chapters every weekend. I remember being very excited about the book’s progress but also astounded how the case studies I had chosen so beautifully demonstrated Jupiter and Saturn transits.
Originally published by My Spirit Books in 2013 and re-published by The Wessex Astrologer in 2017, “Growing Pains” is an astrology book for parents and teachers and even adolescence themselves. It is meant to ease the suffering of this tricky life stage for all concerned. (I hated being 13!).
I wanted “Growing Pains” to be accessible to non astrologers. Not wanting to be an astrological smart ass talking down my fellow teaching professionals, I kept the astrological concepts clean and easy. I approached writing about astrology exactly the same way I approached teaching Shakespeare to unwilling students. Using humour, careful explanations and a lot of examples of relevance, I wanted to show parents and teachers that with just a little extra reach beyond Sun signs, they could understand how their child learns and develops.
I ended up leaving full time teaching to promote the book, never expecting to the adventure ahead of me. Self promotion is hard work–it’s difficult to tell people how wonderful your work is. It feels weird to be telling people to buy your book when you have been raised to be polite.
But “Growing Pains” has taken me around the world and I’ve met so many really wonderful people who encouraged and supported me. This page features some of their very kind words and support of my vision to bring astrology to education.
“Growing Pains” is available from Midheaven Books, Amazon, Treadwell’s (where the book launch was held) and it’s even on display in Watkin’s Books! Signed copies are available upon request (send a message to the contact page). You can also buy the book directly from the publisher, The Wessex Astrologer who will also publish my next three books!
Any enquiries, please contact me via the contacts page or the Growing Pains Facebook page.
Oh and to celebrate Jupiter moving into Sagittarius, here’s a sample chapter!
So without further ado. . .here’s some praise for “Growing Pains”
Teenagers!!! Part child, part adult, sometimes full monster!!! At least they appear so. The sad truth is they appear that way, simply because we adults have forgotten what our experiences of the world were when we were that age; or we simply have no understanding of how their minds work.
That will all change when you read this wonderful book by Alex Trenoweth. Her experience as both a high school teacher and an astrologer has made not only an understanding of these years easily available, but she offers wonderful insights as to how to make your relationship with your teenager more meaningful. If you want to help your teen make the most of these changes s/he is experiencing, then this book is a must, whether you are a teacher or a parent.
Hedley Spargo, teacher, UK
Alex has highlighted this area of astrology to the great benefit of parents who care to listen. What she has to say is perceptive and wise. Her pupils would have been nurtured so well by her understanding of ‘where they were coming from’. I commend you to Alex, her books, and what she has to say.
Ana Andrade, Peru
Growing Pains is a really inspired and useful way of using the Jupiter and Saturn cycles to help kids, parent and teachers through the stormy waters of adolescence.
Roy Gillett B.Ed [Hons Ldn], UK
Astrology is an invaluable tool to understand individual and whole year groups of school pupils. Alex Trenoweth’s Growing Pains draws on her pioneering work in the classroom. It is recommended reading for teachers, parents and, indeed anyone who wishes go beyond projecting their own expectations, and instead relate to children and adolescents as they are.
Sensitive, kind and caring teacher and author of Growing Pains, Alex Trenoweth has identified herself with troubled adolescents. Her in-depth study of astrology, with psychological input, coupled with an intense urge to search for solutions to help such adolescents, have been brought together in this marvelous book. Alex has paved a mid-path between a highly
technical approach and a total ignorance about the synchronicity between cosmic planetary motions. Using the planets of Jupiter and Saturn, she demonstrates the waxing and waning of periods of growth and expansion with periods of trials and tribulations. Studying the cosmic cycles of these two major planets would be extremely rewarding for parents, teachers and guides as well as for the adolescents as themselves. It is a must-read for anyone who works with children—or for adults who still have the child within.
As someone who taught high school for thirty years, but who knows little about astrology, I can say I found many things that Alex Trenoweth presented had classroom implications and applications. Alex uses astrology in the classroom for a better understanding of individual students as well as transits that correlate to age and grade-level periods of intellectual and emotional development. Her ideas that relate to the Jupiter and Saturn transits can have practical applications in curriculum development.
Some of what she conveys has already been learned by practical experience by many teachers. For example, if anybody asked me what are the most difficult ages to teach, I’d say 14 or 15. Astrologically, this would be the period of their Saturn opposition wherein a sense of independence is combined with a “healthy” opposition to authority. We teachers would blame it on puberty, which is also true, but also fail to see it as a rite of passage or coming of age in the educational sense.
Perhaps her most practical tip for a teacher might be to simply make a class list of students by their birth dates (oldest to youngest). In the high school classroom, I’ve noticed the difference between the older and younger students in the class both in behavior and ability. In the lower grades, the difference is even more pronounced. Finally, when you get down to it, education is our nation’s number one problem. If we are to have citizens who are both productive and responsible more resources are needed to provide students and educators with more options and not more standardized testing. They’re the ones that will be left to solve problems left by previous generations.
How I wish that this wonderful book had been around 36 years ago when I became step-mother to a 13 year old! Not only would I have learnt so, so much from this excellent work by an experienced, thoughtful, caring teacher and very fine astrologer, but I am confident that I would have bought copies for his friend’s parents and often exasperated teachers.
As it is, I have already gifted this to local teachers and plan to buy a copy for another mother today. This work is a valuable addition to any astrological library but to parents and teachers it should be seen as one of the finest works on understanding the adolescent and working through those Growing Pains.
Alex Trenoweth does that rare thing few astrologers find a way to do: take real astrology out into the world of laypeople and show them how to benefit from its insights. This book can help adolescents themselves, teachers and parents understand one of the most important and powerful pairs of cycles in astrology and discover the wealth they have to offer. Alex draws on her experience as a teacher and astrologer to show how the cycles can be used to grasp and get the best of critical developmental cycles and presents them in a way that brings out the richness and depth of astrology in her inimitable style. I am so pleased this book is out in a new edition: unlike the latest theory on adolescent development, its value to parents and students will never go out of style.
Every parent wants the best for their child, especially when it comes to their education. Growing Pains is an indispensable resource for understanding your child’s unique template for learning. This book offers an objective perspective, along with insightful guidance and practical tips to help you naviagate your child’s journey through school.
As a teacher, I use astrology, at times, to help me understand at-risk students. Trenoweth’s book Growing Pains is an extremely helpful resource in explaining how planetary birth (natal) Saturn and Jupiter placements help determine how a child learns and relates to others in the classroom. Whether you interact with young people in personal or professional contexts, I think you’ll find her insights to be both fascinating and useful. Highly recommended.
This is the book for our times! Alex’s personal experience as a teacher, mother, and astrologer is woven together beautifully. I was touched by her caring attitude toward the delicacy of the role of teacher, and educator – and parent! A much needed book in an increasingly complicated world for young people coming of age. All teachers (and parents and students) will learn a lot from reading Growing Pains.
I have known Alex Trenoweth since 2015 when she participated in 25th International Astrological Seminar in Kolkata, India as a speaker. For her dynamic presentation and superior lecture topic, each board member of Krishnamurti Institute of Astrology nominated Alex as the best speaker. She was crowned as the “Astrologer of the year 2015”.
In that very year, she gifted me her book “Growing Pains”. After reading the book, I realized that Alex is not only a good speaker but also a good author. From her book, it can easily be understood the depth of her study and research in the subject.
Moreover, her book “Growing Pains” is written in such a simple language and also is so straight forward that learner can understand about the subject easily. It is quite vital for an individual to select proper educational path as well as the professional career track. In astrological prediction, these two tracks hold an important role especially for younger kids.
If these kids are directed to select educational or professional track as derived from studying planetary position of their birth charts, they can be well established in their lives. These are the central ideas of this book. It also covers a sound explanation on how the two major planets – Jupiter and Saturn – impact on one’s educational and professional life.
Besides, the case studies provided by Alex in her book are also helpful for novices to learn in detail. I believe, “Growing Pains” will improve individual’s life style and provide a deep knowledge about astrology. Hope, Alex will publish more books on this subject in near future.
Best wishes from my end!
– (Founder, Director and Principal
Of Krishnamurti Institute of Astrology)
– (Director of Institute of Vedic Culture
For Public Welfare)
Alex Trenoweth uniquely situates as a professional astrologer and educator. Her presentation at the 2017 Kepler conference on astrological tools for knowing about stage development in youth was riveting. This book captures the essence of that research, sharing knowledge about childhood development from the viewpoint of an educator. This is a fascinating, quick read, packed with the insights of a well-educated and seasoned practitioner.
This book is dedicated to the astrology of adolescence. It answers questions for educators and parents how to best support children during school years. Growing Pains addresses issues of learning style, communication and discipline through the lens of the social planets, Jupiter and Saturn.
The author asserts throughout the book how valuable understanding astrology can be for supporting a child’s growth and development. What drives these children? How do pupils learn when they have specific planet patterns? There is a focus on transits, viewing Jupiter cycles as opportunity for growth with reminders how Saturn then supports discipline and refinement.
Growing Pains is neatly structured so the reader knows what to expect. Each chapter begins by examining in depth Jupiter or Saturn through one sign. This signature is then further refined by exploring the ruling planet through each of the twelve Zodiac signs. Finally, at the end of each chapter, the author uses celebrity charts as case studies to illuminate how social planet transits correlate to transition points over a lifetime for well known people.
The author is clearly passionate about supporting children make the most of their lives. Readers receive suggestions how to be a better parent or teacher based on the aspects in their own chart. Growing Pains gives readers empowering suggestions to consciously encourage the growth and development of the adolescents in their lives.
Parents are likely to focus on the many individual differences among their children, or between their own children and others’. Educators are perhaps more likely to note that this year’s class is somehow different from last year’s class, and in fact as college professor I have not only noted this but have heard other professors making similar observations. Beyond the curious inconsistency, most teachers don’t know what to make of the differences between one class and another. Growing Pains provides an excellent framework for understanding the subtle but real differences between one year’s cohort and the next, based primarily on the astrological signs in which Saturn and Jupiter are found.
Growing Pains is written to educators, but it is a valuable tool for parents and other interested people as well. Because it focuses on two planets that are not considered personal in nature (after all, they remain in the same sign for a year or more), the book is not a comprehensive guide to personality via astrology. Yet learning strategies and becoming part of one’s culture are critical for children, and a greater understanding of these processes could be helpful from preschool through adolescence and into college. Challenging the notion that there is a single best practice in education, Growing Pains adds an extra dimension to debates about how we educate children and what we expect as the outcome of the process. It is also very helpful for getting a sense of the social milieu in which children are living.
While the book can be read from start to finish, most people will probably want to dive into a relevant chapter and read about themselves, their children, or their current crop of students. Starting with some background on Saturn and Jupiter provided at the beginning of each of the two main sections of the book, it is easy for someone who has no previous astrological knowledge to read through Growing Pains in any order.
The use of astrology as a regular facet of education may be a way off, but there’s no reason that interested parents and educators can’t begin using it now, and Growing Pains is an excellent start. It is clearly written and easy to use, offering insight into the joyous but turbulent process of growing up.
Every schoolteacher is familiar with the experience, that one year’s class can be so different from the year before, and how can that be? Here at last is a book which explains the astrology which schoolteachers really need to know – and it isn’t hard. It concerns the basic cycles of Jupiter and Saturn as they impact upon teenage life. These are character-building cycles. Moreover, they are great rhythms which a whole year of pupils are going to share in common: the journey of these heavenly spheres through the twelvefold zodiac, and the chiming of their ‘returns, mainly the Jupiter-return at twelve years and the half-cycle of Saturn’s opposition at fifteen.
Concerned parents are going to find this book helpful, as regards guiding and encouraging their teenage children, and what kind of encouragement is likely to prove effective. The different zodiac signs lend ‘colour’ to the working of these two spheres. Its author Ms Trenoweth is a mother, schoolteacher and professional astrologer so is able to explain these things out of real experience. There are cheerful books giving tips about bringing up teenagers, however this one gives that much needed help in terms of the different zodiac signs of Jupiter and Saturn. Plus, modern readers will not fail to appreciate use of a celeb bio-pic for each one of these, to help build up the picture.
For any teacher who believes character-building is more important than exam results, this has to be an important book. By using celebs in this way, Trenoweth focuses on the concept of success, to show how people have used their God-given talents to make something of their lives. In today’s schools, encouraging pupils is far from easy and the twelvefold pattern here described indicates how this should be done. As a head-of-year in a modern Academy she has put these findings into practice, in a way that made sense to her schoolteacher colleagues.
We all know how Saturn is introvert and Jupiter is extravert. Saturn is a grey planet, while Jupiter glows with psychedelic colouring, its surface illumined by continuous lightning-discharge. Teachers can tend to become Saturnine is a somewhat negative sense, and repress maybe unwittingly the cheerful optimism that is brought by Jupiter. As the latter moves into a new sign once a year, a class can have a mix of two Jupiter-signs, and here Ms Trenoweth’s book describes how separating the younger and older pupils in a class in the teacher’s mark-book helps to distinguish them.
One could say that this book advises the parent or teacher how to strategically intervene in order to ease the process of growing up, while the huge biological changes of adolescence take place. Thus, helpful tables in the book enable the teacher or parent to determine whether the ‘returns’ are single or triple, because a Jupiter-return can chime thrice (from its retrograde motion). If a class is going to be hit by three returns of the storm-god in the course of a year, then that’s a powerful collective experience, and a teacher needs to know of it – to prepare ahead with events of gladness and celebration, rather than retrospectively applying punishment for disorderly behaviour.
To summarise the advice: it is to encourage Jupiter’s role at the return and work with Saturn’s role at its opposition in order to rein in the potential risks of Uranus and Jupiter at their sextiles.
With 260 pages, it’s real value from Amazon
As the title of this well-written, informative, and inspirational book indicates, Growing Pains illustrates how astrology can be used by teachers and parents to gain insight into the challenging behavior and attitudes of adolescents. The book is also meant to give teenagers an opportunity to understand themselves a bit better through astrology.
Few are as well-equipped to do this as the author, Alex Trenoweth, who uses her experience as a secondary school teacher, astrologer, and parent to take on this task, which to my knowledge has not been done previously in an astrology text. In her own words:
“As a teacher of adolescents, I wanted to use my skills and knowledge as an astrologer to enhance my career and yet at the same time be accessible to my colleagues as well as the parents of my pupils….Although my astrology colleagues help people from all walks of life and almost all ages, they tend to avoid adolescents, who need the most guidance. And so, this book is for adolescents, the people who love and care for them and anyone who is curious about how to get the most out of life.” (p. xiii)
Trenoweth does this by focusing primarily on the positions of Jupiter and Saturn—Jupiter rules the areas where we are confident and can move forward, while Saturn, the planet of discipline, rules the areas that we fear and must overcome.
The book is divided into one chapter for each sign placement of Jupiter and Saturn providing a precise and instructional overview of how teenagers with these positions behave, learn, and respond, and how a teacher or parent can use this knowledge to have a positive influence on them. Each chapter also shows what happens when Jupiter opposes natal Jupiter at the age of six, and when Saturn opposes Saturn at the age of 14 to 15. The author describes the teacher with that natal placement, and then fine-tunes Jupiter and Saturn by describing how their dispositors act in each sign.
In the chapter on Jupiter in Scorpio, Trenoweth describes how that placement combines with the position of Mars and Pluto (Scorpio co-rulers) in each sign, and then in the chapter on Saturn in Cancer she describes the Moon’s position in each sign. She finishes each chapter with a celebrity example to show how that person’s formative years contributed to who they became as adults. Since the positions of Jupiter and Saturn do not change throughout the day, she uses both timed and untimed charts including Alfred Hitchcock, Sean Connery, Robert Downey Jr., Cher, Leonardo DiCaprio, and others. I would have preferred only timed charts since they are readily available, but each case study is nonetheless applicable. Alfred Hitchcock, for example, has Jupiter in Scorpio, and his lonely childhood and love of mystery obviously influenced his approach to films.
The book concludes with the chapter, “The Variation of Jupiter and Saturn Cycles in One Academic Year.” Since Jupiter changes signs every 12 to 13 months, and Saturn changes signs every two and a half years, groups of students who will be in the same grade throughout their school years share the natal positions of these two planets. For example, a child born in 2005 will be 13 years old during this current 2018-2019 school year. In 2005, Jupiter was in Libra until it went into Scorpio on October 25, whereas Saturn was in Cancer until it went into Leo on July 16. That means there are three distinct groups of teenagers who are presently 13 years old:
Until I read this final fascinating chapter, I had never thought of viewing groups of students, who go through their entire childhood and teenage years closely intertwined, according to the characteristics and significations of those two planets. The author has done a wonderful job explaining this, and while every individual’s chart is unique, this presents a fascinating overview that can enhance how teachers and parents approach adolescents. In this chapter she compares Drew Barrymore, born February 22, 1975 with Jupiter in Pisces and Saturn in Cancer and Angelina Jolie, born June 4, 1975 with Jupiter in Aries and Saturn in Cancer, to show how two people, who would have been in the same grade at school, differ not only in their attributes, but in the timing of their first Jupiter return (around the age of 12) and their first Saturn opposition to natal Saturn (around the age of 14).
The appendix includes tables of Jupiter and Saturn sign ingresses, and their conjunctions, rounding out an extremely informative book, and one that should be on every astrologer’s bookshelf. Even if you are not a teacher or no longer have teenagers living at home, you can use the insights found in this book to advise people who do.
If every parent and every teacher read this book it would be a better world. Kids have suffered educationally, not because teachers don’t care, but because a lack of understanding of their inbuilt dissimilarities and associated specific needs is not conducive to the flowering of their potential. This book, written by a teacher and astrologer, will put this right. Not only does it offer insightful and humorous descriptions of character, and methods of getting the best out of that character, it also offers descriptions of famous personalities that come with handsome portrait drawings, and these descriptions allow you to see how the character traits you learn about manifest in the real world. I love this book.
This book provides excellent insights for both parents and teachers in understanding what each child needs to help them fulfil their potential. It’s very accessible so that it doesn’t require a knowledge of astrology to make good use of it, but at the same time, even for seasoned astrologers, there are plenty of valuable nuggets here.
As the mother of three young daughters, I found this book to be informative,helpful and entertaining. The author explains everything clearly and with humor.