"The ultimate goal of raising children is to help them out of our lives and into successful lives of their own. "

Pre-Teen (11-12 years)

John's Most Recent Articles

Make 'Em an Offer They Can't Refuse

Posted on 10/16/2018

When I was a child, my most important possession was my bicycle, followed closely by my radio. My bike was how I got around. I rode it to school, friend’s houses, pick-up...

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Exchange Arrangements Stressful to Pre-Teen Daughter

Posted on 9/12/2018

Q: I am reading your book “The Well-Behaved Child” and have a question that it doesn’t address. I am a single mom with children from two different fathers. One of my ex-husbands (my son’s father)...

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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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Recent Questions

7 year old boy needs leadership to solve the problem

Posted 2 days ago

We are using the Strike System with our two children. Our seven year old boy often receives all of his strikes as he is a High Misbehaver (currently) and is sent to his room. However, he will not...

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Strategy for Grandparent involvement.

Posted 1 week ago

Our son left his wife and child soon after she gave birth. We've remained close to her and our grandson and we've gotten even closer since both of her parents have passed away in the past 2 years....

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Prepare to lead before leading.

Posted 1 week ago

My 11-year-old son tells lies and avoids the truth even when he knows he's been caught, he will argue every point he disagrees with, he will disobey punishment by simply walking away. We do not...

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The Terrible 12's

Posted 2 weeks ago

A few months have passed. This school year seems to have been a big step for my now 12 year old. We have been struggling most of the school year and just got his grades for the second quarter. The...

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Avoid Making Mountains out of Molehills

Posted on 1/18/2019

Our 12-year-old daughter is raising concerns (both ours and at least one of her teachers') with violence in her writing. Last fall she asked me to read over a fictional short story she had written...

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Eyebrows: Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow

Posted on 12/24/2018

Recently my 12 year old daughter has started pulling out her eyebrow hairs to the point of it being extremely noticeable. Says she is aware she is doing it but can’t seem to stop. She can not...

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Fears about son's fears.

Posted on 12/15/2018

My son just turned 12 and was once such a happy child. Now he asks me questions that I’m not sure how to answer. He says he is not happy and doesn’t feel like he belongs in his body. He thinks...

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Put some Harsh in their Mellow

Posted on 12/7/2018

Our son recently turned 11. Having just finished "Parenting by the book" and almost done "Teenproofing" I am certain we started too late with "Gramma's rules" while we fumbled through time outs,...

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The Headless Choresmen

Posted on 12/7/2018

Having completed "Parenting by the Book" , I sadly realize I have done my children no favors by doing so much for them. They are now 7 and 11 and need to be reminded to do every little thing. We...

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11 year old not paying attention to parents

Posted on 12/6/2018

I just reviewed a questions from another subscriber using a ticket system with a 7 year old to nip multiple behaviors in the bud. In the answer I read "You cannot disciple or discipline a child...

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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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