"Children learn whatever you teach them, whether you've intended for them to learn it or not. "

Young Teen/Junior High (13-15 years)

John's Most Recent Articles

Simple Solutions for Teens, Tantrums and Smartphones

Posted on 12/4/2018

Q: Our 15-year-old daughter is very demanding and, to be honest, self-centered. One of the things she does is ask one of us for something and demand an instant decision, as in, “Can I go to the...

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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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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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Take Smartphone Away from Sassy Teen

Posted on 2/21/2018

Q: When our daughter, an only child, turned thirteen and entered the 8th grade, it was like a switch was flipped. Almost overnight, she went from being a sweet, respectful and obedient child who...

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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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Bring Back Vocational Education in High Schools

Posted on 4/11/2017

During my sophomore year at Proviso West High School in Hillside, Illinois, my guidance counselor, Mr. Gusloff, refused my request to take auto shop because I was, he said, college-bound and my...

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How to Calm a Screaming...Teen?

Posted on 1/31/2017

Q: Our 15-year-old daughter has become, over the past year or so, quite a disruptive influence in our normally peaceful home. She was a gem until she entered high school when she almost overnight...

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Stay Dispassionate yet Approachable During Teen's Experimentation With Vaping

Posted on 1/18/2017

Q: I found a vaping pen hidden in my 13-year-old son's room and am at a loss as to how to deal with it. He is very susceptible to peer pressure and wants very badly to fit in with the "cool"...

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Take a Time-Out Before Engaging With Argumentative Child

Posted on 11/22/2016

Q: In last week’s column, you advised parents not to argue with teenagers. That’s fine and dandy advice, John, but you failed to tell your readers how to stay out of or end these arguments. For...

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A Non-Argumentative Teen Is a Happy One

Posted on 11/15/2016

My advice to The Wall Street Journal, the only news source to which I subscribe: Stop trying to be all things to all people. Specifically, stop giving parenting advice. The latest attempt by...

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Recent Questions

Homeschool Blues

Posted on 3/19/2019

I homeschool my 13 year old son. We are fairly new to our current city and have recently made friends by joining a local co-op. My son was asked, by his new friends, to join an additional co-op....

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Standing up to a Bully

Posted on 3/15/2019

My son is 7th grade and at a new school. Middle school has been hard. Today a very big boy in his class who he normally is friends with pushed him in the hall because he was trying to show out in...

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Technology Addiction

Posted on 3/13/2019

I have a 13 year old son who has had a smart phone for one year. He is an academically hard working, popular kid who enjoys being with his friends and playing baseball and football. However, his...

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Prevailing not Travailing

Posted on 3/9/2019

My 14 year old daughter was mad at me about a consequence I gave her after clearly telling her what the expectations were. She knew what the rules were and broke them so I gave her the...

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Trim Teen Talk Time?

Posted on 2/22/2019

My son will be 16 In a month. When he was younger, he and I (his mother) would have 'talk time' - when we would lie in bed before he went to sleep to talk, share, etc. We stopped doing that a...

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Puberty and Lingerie Continues to be a problem

Posted on 2/21/2019

We are continuing to have a problem with my son, now 14, and girls clothes. I noticed some of my items missing recently, black camisole and a black slip. I found a bag in his closet filled with...

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7th grade boy and school tech use

Posted on 2/15/2019

My 7th grader boy is at a new school. He has gotten a detention for looking at baseball videos on his computer during class. So I grounded him and took everything away..once off being grounded he...

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Teenage drama

Posted on 2/5/2019

My 14 year old son had a very rough transition to high school this year. Although he has the ability, he is not performing well and has failed two classes last semester. This semester is not...

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Flowers for V-D for wife and daughter?

Posted on 1/31/2019

I buy my wife flowers for Valentine's Day and I'd like to buy some for my daughter as well, as an annual tradition. Are there any concerns with that, such as putting her on the same level as my...

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Some problems require more intense attention.

Posted on 1/6/2019

Hello, My question involves a 15 year old with a tragic story. She lost her father at 2 and a half to a freak accident on the job and then three years later she lost her mother to skin cancer. ...

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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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