"How do you get a child to do what he's told the first time he's told? Don't ever repeat yourself. "

Pre-Teen (11-12 years)

John's Most Recent Articles

The Peer Group: When to Do Something, What to Do, and When to Do Nothing

Posted on 5/1/2018

No question about it, the peer group exerts great influence on teenagers. From the way they dress to the way they carry their books, the stamp of peer pressure is upon them. If the influence is...

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Micromanaging Weakens Child's Success in School

Posted on 8/22/2017

Q: Our son attends first grade at the local public school. At the beginning of the school year, all the parents were basically told that we are expected to go to the school’s parent website every...

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Take the Drama out of Math Homework

Posted on 8/30/2016

Q: Our sixth-grade son has always been an excellent math student. This year, however, he melts down every time he does math homework. Within minutes, he becomes highly agitated, begins crying,...

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Selecting the Right Private School

Posted on 8/16/2016

Q: We are looking for a private school for our 4-year-old. Regardless of the school we ultimately choose, we want to keep him there through eighth grade at least. We live in an suburban area so...

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Misplacing a Sense of Purpose

Posted on 12/9/2014

Q: My buddy’s wife walks their 11-year-old into the classroom each day. Then she takes out his assignments and helps him get ready. We’re talking about a very capable kid who has no...

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Pull-Ups & Adoption Age

Posted on 9/16/2014

Q: My 23-month-old son does well with potty training when we’re at home. We use a “potty bell” and he goes every 90 minutes or so. When we’re away from home, however, he seems clueless. He...

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Impulse Control: A Hallmark of Life

Posted on 8/5/2014

A mom recently asked me what I would say to my son if he was twelve years old and wanted a Mohawk haircut for the summer. I told her I’d say no. “But is it really that...

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To Help or Not To Help?

Posted on 6/3/2014

I recently asked a group of 50 teachers: “Raise your hand if you agree that when a child comes to an adult asking for help with an academic problem, the adult should help.” ...

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Good Parenting Decisions

Posted on 5/20/2014

Q: For the first five years of her life, it was just me and my now 13-year-old daughter. I didn’t have a clue as to what I was doing. I wasn’t consistent; I didn’t hold her accountable; I was an...

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Too Old to Cuddle?

Posted on 4/15/2014

Q: My 11-year old son, an only child, continues to ask me to "snuggle" with him and scratch his back at bed time. This is a time for us to read aloud, chat about concerns or questions, and say...

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Recent Questions

12 y/o sensitivities most likely manipulative behavior

Posted 3 days ago

My almost 12 year old daughter has been having issues with visual/hearing/touch sensitivities that started when she was 9. These issues have gotten to the point of disrupting not only her life,...

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Tattling

Posted 1 week ago

We are still using the ticket system with our children (ages 10, 13, 13, 15) even though we want to eventually move away from it and begin to think along the lines of parenting teens. For now, do...

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Setting the Expectation for Better Grades

Posted 2 weeks ago

My 11 yr old son has very average grades. He had 2 C's on his report card, and I did not pressure him or get involved with his schoolwork very much this past 6th grade year. Should I create more...

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No interest in extracurricular activities.

Posted 2 weeks ago

My 11 year old son does not want to participate in any extra curricular activities. He wants to attend school and that is all. I have tried to get him interested in sports, but he starts crying...

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Implementing the principles of leadership parenting.

Posted 3 weeks ago

We have 2 boys, ages 9 and 11. Our youngest is disrespectful, disobedient, uses unkind words with his older sibling and throws tantrums/damaging things in our home. His disobedience is constant....

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Block System Dilemma

Posted on 5/8/2018

Our boys do not stay in their rooms when they are told to and repeatedly come out until they work their way to an early bedtime and then continue coming out often times loud and disruptive until...

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The Better Half

Posted on 4/19/2018

I have 2 step-daughters, ages 11 and 8, who spend half of their time with us and half with their mom. We don’t allow them to use any form of social media and have explained to them the dangers....

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The Extracurricular Activities Freight Train

Posted on 4/17/2018

I'm trying to put a slow down on the extracurricular activities by asking them to choose one or two. How much input should they be allowed in deciding which ones? For example, I think they need...

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The Self Esteem Monster

Posted on 4/10/2018

It seems lately I'm constantly trying to undo the last 10 years worth of damage that I've created. I take full responsibility for that but the question is always how. My daughters 12 and 9 have...

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Addressing Self Esteem

Posted on 4/4/2018

It seems lately I'm constantly trying to undo the last 10 years worth of damage that I've created. I take full responsibility for that but the question is always how. My daughters 12 and 9 have...

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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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