Dave Nettell's Parenting Page



Parents Wrestle to Define Clinton Scandal Details
S.F. Examiner, 9/12/98

Parents across America already have faced the unsettling, precocious questions about sex from their young children. They've had to define oral sex and explain what is meant by an extramarital affair.  Now comes the Kenneth Starr report, guaranteed to generate even more questions, comments and, in some age groups, jokes from children.

Special Parking for Parents Riles Some
S.F. Chronicle, 9/7/98

When a Rohnert Park developer tried to ease the lives of harried parents by reserving parking lot spaces for them near a busy supermarket, he thought the community would be thrilled.

D.A.'s Program Tries to Head Off Truancy Early
Los Angeles Times, 8/30/98

...Abolish Chronic Truancy program, a collaborative effort in 16 Los Angeles County school districts aimed at forcing parents to stop writing notes claiming sickness for kids who aren't really sick. The program focuses on young children, not teenagers, because they are at an age at which their parents can more easily wield strong influence.

Parents, Kids Anticipate School
San Jose Mercury News, 8/30/98

Anxiety, expectation mix as opening day nears

A Back-to-School Ritual that Drains the Pocketbook
Los Angeles Times, 8/29/98

Spread out on our dining room table for well over a week, the many color-coded sheets of 8 1/2-by-11-inch paper were a nagging reminder of yet another back-to-school ritual that needed tending to--and soon. The papers arrived as efficiently packaged missives from the schools my kids will enter in a week and a half. There were the usual emergency cards to be filled out, "home language" surveys to be completed, bell schedules to post, and pages of dress codes and student-conduct rules to be read and digested.

Some Back to School Tips for Parents
Contra Costa Times, 8/26/98

Here are some tips for parents to start the new school year, from the National Education Association.

The Power of their Peers
Time Magazine, 8/24/98

A book argues that parents have little influence. Provocative. But true?


Bloch, Douglas. Positive Self-Talk for Children -- Teaching Self-Esteem through Affirmations: A Guide for Parents, Teachers, and Counselors. Bantam Doubleday Books, New York, 1993.

Calkins, Lucy McCormick. Raising Lifelong Learners -- A Parent's Guide. Addison Wesley, Reading, MA, 1997.

One of the best books for parents I have ever come across. Clear, concise, and written from a parent-educator's perspective. I am recommending it widely these days.

Coles, Robert. The Moral Intelligence of Children -- How to Raise a Moral Child. Random House, New York, 1997.

Also available in audio cassette format.

Gurian, Michael. The Wonder of Boys -- What Parents, Mentors, and Educators can Do to Shape Boys into Exceptional Men. Jeremy Tarcher, New York, 1996.

Also available in audio cassette format.

Harris, Judith Rich.  The Nurture Assumption -- Why Children Turn Out the Way They Do.  Free Press, 1998.

Whether it's musical talent, criminal tendencies, or fashion sense, we humans want to know why we have it or why we don't. What makes us the way we are? Maybe it's in our genes, maybe it's how we were raised, maybe it's a little of both--in any case, Mom and Dad usually receive both the credit and the blame. But not so fast, says developmental psychology writer Judith Rich Harris. While it has been shown that genetics is only partly responsible for behavior, it is also true, Harris asserts, that parents play a very minor role in mental and emotional development. The Nurture Assumption explores the mountain of evidence pointing away from parents and toward peer groups as the strongest environmental influence on personality development. Rather than leaping into the nature vs. nurture fray, Harris instead posits nurture (parental) vs. nurture (peer group), and in her view your kid's friends win, hands down.

Hewlitt, Sylvia Ann & West, Cornel. The War Against Parents: What We Can Do for America's Beleaguered Moms and Dads. Houghton-Mifflin, New York, 1998.

Joan Ryan's column in the Sunday Chronicle Examiner (4/19/98) is about this book.

The average worker is now at work 163 hours a year more than in 1980 -- shortchanging their children Sometimes I've wondered why we don't seem to be as adept at parenting as our parents were. Why do we feel more squeezed for time, less sure of ourselves? And why do we seem to be raising a nation of lost, out-of-control kids?

McCoy, Elin. What to Do... When Kids Are Mean to Your Child. Reader's Digest Press, New York, 1997.

Ms. Foundation for Women. Girls Seen and Heard -- 52 Life Lessons for Our Daughters. Jeremy Tarcher Publishing, New York, 1998.

In Girls Seen and Heard, we’ve transformed the insights of the extraordinarily popular Take Our Daughters To Work® Day into the successful habits of a lifetime. Girls are looking intently at our lives: how we act with them and with one another; when we speak up and when we choose silence; how we resolve conflict and deal with power. They aren’t looking for perfection, for perfect women with perfect jobs. They are looking for truths and realities. As you read this book, remember that yours is a voice of strength, authority, and compassion. Through your own courage to speak and act, you can help a girl become all that she can be: visible, valued and heard. Marie C. Wilson, President, Ms. Foundation for Women

Nowicki, Stephen & Duke, Marshall. Helping the Child Who Doesn't Fit In. Peachtree Publishers, Atlanta, GA, 1992.

Nowicki, Stephen & Duke, Marshall. Teaching Your Child the Language of Social Success. Peachtree Publishers, Atlanta, GA, 1996.

Pennac, Daniel. Better Than Life -- The Secrets of Reading. Coach House Press, Toronto, 1994.

The Reader's Bill of Rights:

1. The right not to read.
2. The right to skip pages.
3. The right not to finish.
4. The right to reread.
5. The right to read anything.
6. The right to escapism.
7. The right to read anywhere.
8. The right to browse.
9. The right to read out loud.
10. The right not to defend your tastes.

Pipher, Mary. Reviving Ophelia -- Saving the Selves of Adolescent Girls. Random House, New York, 1994.

Pipher, Mary. The Shelter of Each Other -- Rebuilding Our Families. Ballantine Books, New York, 1996.

Ponton, Lynn E., M.D. The Romance of Risk -- Why Teenagers Do the Things They Do. HarperCollins, New York, 1997.

Rich, Dorothy. MegaSkills -- Building Children's Achievement for the Information Age. Houghton Mifflin Company, New York, NY, 1998.

A new, revised, and updated edition published 1/1/98.

Riera, Michael. Uncommon Sense for Parents with Teenagers. Celestial Arts, Berkeley, CA, 1995.

Riera, Michael. Surviving High School. Celestial Arts, Berkeley, CA, 1997.

Winik, Marilyn. The Lunch-Box Chronicles -- Notes from the Parenting Underground. Pantheon Books, New York, 1998.

"Take Erma Bombeck, add the obsessions of a single mother with two boys under the age of 10, lace with a mild streak of wildness, and you have Marion Winik, as companionable a writer as a crazed parent ever found." So says the New York Times Book Review about this hilarious look at child rearing from NPR commentator Marion Winik.

Wolf, Anthony E. 'It's Not Fair, Jeremy Spencer's Parents Let Him Stay Up All Night!' : A Guide to the Tougher Parts of Parenting. Noonday Press, 1996.

Wolf, Anthony E. Get Out of My Life, but First Could You Drive Me and Cheryl to the Mall? : A Parent's Guide to the New Teenager. Noonday Press, 1992.


Early Warning, Timely Response -- A Guide to Safe Schools, a joint project of the U.S. Office of Education, the U.S. Department of Justice, and the National Association of School Psychologists, has been just released. The entire text is available for browsing or download by clicking on the title link.

Helping Your Child with Homework

A publication of the United States Department of Education. The department also has published a companion guide, Helping Your Students with Homework -- A Teacher's Guide.


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