"A child who has learned to pay attention to parents will go to school prepared to pay attention to teachers. "

Pre-Teen (11-12 years)

John's Most Recent Articles

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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Why Small Classrooms Are Overrated

Posted on 5/5/2020

No rational person would argue that the smaller the class size, the better, right?” asked the radio talk show host. “I think I’m a rational person,” I said, “and I can offer proof...

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In Defense of Homeschooling

Posted on 4/28/2020

In his November 1863 address at Gettysburg, Abraham Lincoln proclaimed that the men who lost their lives on that battlefield had done so in order that “government of the people, by the people and...

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Father's Visitation With Child Should Be Allowed

Posted on 1/15/2020

Q: Our ten-year-old granddaughter lives with us. We have custody of her but her father, our son, is now asking us for visitation privileges. I probably don’t need to tell you that both he and his...

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It Is Not Necessary to Help Your Child With Homework

Posted on 11/26/2019

After a recent talk in South Florida, women came up to me in droves asking, “How much should I help my children with their schoolwork?” That not one man asked the question...

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In Today's Parenting, Feelings Trump the Truth

Posted on 11/19/2019

Okay, it’s time to set the record straight, confront the gorilla in the proverbial room, call a spade a spade, and so on and so forth. I recently published a column on “The...

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Children Do Best in School When Parents Do Not Monitor Progress

Posted on 10/29/2019

The Portal. It sounds like something out of a science fiction novel, the gateway to an alternative universe that lures, then traps the unwary in its nefarious web of illusion, where things are...

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Teenage Girls and Boys Respond to Technology Differently

Posted on 10/2/2019

Q: We held off giving our oldest daughter a smartphone until she was fifteen, the age at which we allowed her older brother to have one. We read your column weekly in our hometown newspaper and...

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Teen Not a Suicide Risk

Posted on 7/23/2019

My recent column pertaining to a 12-year-old who told his parents he’d thought about suicide several times over the past six months stirred a fair number of folks to respond. Feelings toward the...

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Recent Questions

Keep Delicate Conversations As Simple as Possible

Posted on 10/22/2020

Hello! I am wondering how, when the topic comes up, should I address same sex relationships with my kids (mainly my 8 year old son for now; I also have a 4 year old daughter). We are Catholic...

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Exhausted Mom of 11-Year-Old Needs Help

Posted on 10/19/2020

I am a mother of an 11yr old daughter. I am a wife and caregiver to a disabled Veteran with mental and physical health problems. My faith is the only thing keeping me going right now. I am having...

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Teens and Technology: Education is Key for Safety

Posted on 10/14/2020

We have not allowed our 3 children ages 12, 14 and 15 to have cell phones. They also do not have Social Media accounts. They are allowed to text or FaceTime friends or cousins using our phones. ...

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Parenting a Disrespectful Teen with Divorced Parents

Posted on 10/10/2020

Almost two years ago my husband left (affair) and we are in a very difficult divorce. We are not friendly and don’t communicate other than texting. We have four children together and have 50/50...

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3D Snapshot of the Mien of a Tween: not a Pretty Picture

Posted on 9/23/2020

My 12 year old son is stealing money out of my purse. He has a long history of defiance, sneakiness, and lying. He is also disrespectful, and disobedient. We suspect he's been stealing money for...

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Disrespectful 8-Year-Old

Posted on 9/19/2020

We have noticed more ungrateful and entitled behavior in my 8 year old son recently. During a trip to the zoo, he became upset and was rude and disrespectful when I would not buy him food and ice...

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What to Do About Screen Addiction?

Posted on 7/5/2020

My 11-year-old son is obsessed with screens. If we tell him to do something while he is on his phone or iPad he huffs and puffs or we are told, “in a minute." Then he only gets 2 out of 3 chores...

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Big Sister 11 wants some space from 8 year old brother

Posted on 6/24/2020

Thank you so much for the thoughtful and helpful ways you've equipped me as a parent since signing up to this site. I've come to understand that I should let my kids resolve issues they have with...

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Emotional Intelligence Begins With Good Manners

Posted on 6/14/2020

Are you familiar with the term 2e kids? Or twice exceptional? Our 10 year old son appears to fall into this category. He is at above average intelligence, but his emotional iq is lacking and a...

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Talking to Kids About Dyslexia

Posted on 6/11/2020

My son has a moderate case of dyslexia, and he is 10. Our daughter, who is 7, has a mild case of dyslexia. Our son, of course, knows he is dyslexic, however, we have not told our daughter she is...

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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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