Pre-Teen (11-12 years)

John's Most Recent Articles

School Principal Asks About Discipline

Posted on 10/25/2022

Q: I am a principal at a private church-affiliated school. Contrary to my graduate school training and most of my peers’ practice, I believe disciplinary actions should "fit the crime."...

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On Chores, Discipline, Potty-Training

Posted on 3/29/2022

Q: When I give my 5-year-old daughter a chore, she does it, but all the while she is muttering under her breath, huffing and puffing, and so on. Do I discipline that behavior or just let her...

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In Defense of ‘Because I Said So'

Posted on 2/1/2022

Q: Concerning chores, another expert recommends giving a child a certain number of chips, like poker chips, every month and if he or she fails to do a chore or doesn’t do it properly, you take a...

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Teaching Financial Responsibility to Teens

Posted on 9/14/2021

Q: My two young teens are constantly begging me to buy them clothes. It’s become highly annoying. After reading your book on teenagers, I’ve decided to stop buying them any clothing and give them...

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The Biggest Problem Teachers Face Is Parents

Posted on 7/13/2021

When I ask a teacher, “What is the biggest problem you face?” the answer – there has never been an exception – is “parents.” That is certainly a recent phenomenon. My parents were...

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Four Steps To Give Argumentative Teenager the Last Word (and Restore Sanity)

Posted on 6/8/2021

Q: My fifteen-year-old daughter is slowly driving me insane! She argues with me about everything and always wants the last word. No matter how well I explain the “why?” of a decision to her, she...

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Micromanaging Child Always Produces Conflicts

Posted on 2/23/2021

A therapist takes a 10-year-old boy into what she calls “therapy.” The young fellow is belligerently defiant toward his parents and throws titanic tantrums when things don’t go his way. At school...

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Beware of 'The Protocol'

Posted on 12/29/2020

Q: Our son is seven years old and in the second grade. His school went virtual this past Spring and we see no end to it, not in the near term at least. When he was going to a brick-and-mortar...

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Parents Can Recover From Not Getting Over the 'Hump of Parenting'

Posted on 10/20/2020

Q: In a recent column, you identified toddlerhood as “the hump of parenting.” As a grandmother who managed to raise five kids who were out of the house in their early twenties and are responsible...

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The Realities of Smartphones and Teenagers

Posted on 9/20/2020

A mother in California seeks her pastor’s opinion on allowing her fifteen-year-old son to have a smartphone. The boy claims that if he can’t use social media, he will have no friends. Mom is...

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Recent Questions

BOOKS ON PUBERTY AND REPRODUCTION

Posted 2 weeks ago

Have you any recommendations for books about puberty and reproduction that do not have underlying political or religious agendas? I am struggling to find just the right fit for my 10-year-old. One...

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Anger Mismanagement

Posted on 1/4/2023

My 11.5 year old, quite academic son, is very respectful outside home and loved by his teachers. In past few years he is lacking anger management and becomes disrespectful (especially with mom)...

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13YO Thinks She's All That and A Bag of Chips

Posted on 1/4/2023

My 13 year old has been very mean to her sisters for a while now. She is very smart and quick witted. She is constantly talking down to her sisters, belittling them and making one of them cry. We...

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11 year old usurps parental authority

Posted on 12/9/2022

My 11y old son (adopted within our family) got diagnosed with reactive attachment disorder. We do a wholistic approach such as yours. Recently, he had been showing exemplary behavior for about a...

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THE PUNISHMENT FITS THE CRIME.

Posted on 10/19/2022

I am a principal at a Christian School. I believe disciplinary actions should "fit the crime" and do not generally issue standard consequences. I recently had a student to speak ill of another...

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10 Year Old with Violent Fits, Divorced Parents and "trifecta of diagnoses"

Posted on 10/13/2022

My 10 year old son has the adoptive trifecta of diagnoses: "on the autism spectrum", oppositional defiant disorder, and ADHD. Sometimes he has violent fits - although now they're down to 1 or 2...

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Ditch the "Smart" Phones

Posted on 10/1/2022

Hello, After coming in contact with your blog, I (dad) am trying to be more macro manager and not micro with my two girls, ages 13 and 11. They have iPhones. Should I be setting a screen time...

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Enforcement is difficult.

Posted on 8/11/2022

My son is 12 years old and has been confined to his bedroom for the past month and a half for getting F’s in school. My husband thought he was acting suspicious so he peeked in his window and...

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KARL MARX HAD IT RIGHT!

Posted on 8/10/2022

It was the first day of school today for my 11-year-old (5th grade) and 8 year-old (3rd grade). An exciting day for all involved. My 11-year-old girl came home from school today and I asked how...

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Keeping Kids off Friends' Electronic Devices

Posted on 8/8/2022

We live in an HOA community with small backyards, so we can't tell our boys to play in the backyard all day though we have a trampoline. Instead, we hoped that our kids would play with the...

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Audio

Parenting the Strong Willed Teen Audio File

Posted on 1/8/2015

This is an entertaining and informative talk on understanding and managing even the most petulant of today’s teenagers. The talk was recorded live before an audience in San Diego, CA and is based...

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