A student covers their head with their hands next to a pile of school books.
Ages 10-12 (Tween)Ages 13-17 (Teen)Education

Why am I Worried About College When My Kid is in Middle School?

If you spend a lot of time on Facebook, or have friends or relatives who have kids approaching college age, you may have seen the NYT column by Frank Bruni that published on Friday and started circulating, at least on my social network almost immediately: How to Survive the College Admissions …

Ages 10-12 (Tween)Health

Young Dad, Old Dad…

(CN: Parental Health, Parental Death) It was the Schmoo’s 10th birthday at the end of February. She requested an excursion to the University of Cincinnati Rec Center’s Climbing Wall, so off we went to watch her and her 10 closest friends clambered up and down the fake rock face. A …

Ages 10-12 (Tween)Parenting FailsParenting Styles

Angry Parent. Angry Kid.

Confession: Sometimes I’m a lousy parent. Sometimes I get angry. Sometimes I lose my temper. Sometimes I yell. And my kid yells too. He loses his temper over stuff that is really small. Unlike my stuff which is obviously real and significant. There’s nothing like hearing yourself in your kid’s meltdown. I’ve read …

Ages 10-12 (Tween)IdentityLGBTQSex and Sexuality

“I Was Your Daughter, But Now I’m Your Son.”

Life has been busy Chez Phoenix, hence the long hiatus between posts. You ever have so much going on that you can’t pick just one thing to write about? It’s been like that. The most important thing we’ve been dealing with recently is Hipster Tween’s (hereafter referred to as HT) …

Ages 10-12 (Tween)Ages 13-17 (Teen)Health

Raising The Anxious Child

I’ll start with a caveat – my kid has not been formally diagnosed as having an anxiety disorder. Neither has her father.  Both of them have dealt with panic attacks, phobias, and anxiety issues all their lives, but – so far at least – these issues have been mild enough …

Ages 10-12 (Tween)Ages 13-17 (Teen)Ages 2-5Ages 6-9AtheismLGBTQLinksTraditions & Celebrations

Grounded Parents’ Gift Ideas (updated 12/9)

No, this isn’t a list of things you can send us; I’ll leave that for another person to post! It’s the holiday season, and many of our readers will be on the hunt for gift ideas. We’re going to pull together a bunch of suggestions for budding scientists, skeptics, alternative lifestyles, and …

Ages 10-12 (Tween)Ages 13-17 (Teen)Ages 6-9AtheismReligion

Raising the Atheist Child

I’ve been an atheist since I can remember.  Some people think I’m kidding when I say this, but I can clearly remember my Lutheran kindergarten, when the teacher was going on about Jesus and I was giving all the other kids the side-eye: You’re not really buying this? Dr. Skull, …

ActivitiesAges 10-12 (Tween)Ages 2-5Media & Technology

Third Thursday (Thankful) Television

It’s that time of year…when the world falls in love…tries desperately to stave off the onslaught of Christmas carols and instead focuses briefly, not on the things that we want (just a few more weeks kids), but on those things that we are grateful to have. For example, my colleagues …

Kids playing on a playground
Ages 10-12 (Tween)Ages 6-9FriendshipPlay

The Problem With Tween Girls*

The click-bait headline blared something I can’t quite remember about how just plain horrible elementary and middle school (i.e. tween) girls are. They are pushy and loud and mean. That’s the idea right? That we are raising a generation of girls so imbued with the paradoxical juxtaposition of “girl power” …

Kids trick or treating at a large house.
ActivitiesAges 10-12 (Tween)Ages 13-17 (Teen)

I’d Rather be a [Halloween Costume].

October is/was Bullying Awareness Month. This is something I assume that most of our readers know, but interestingly, it’s not something I felt was overly emphasized in my son’s school. There were some words said in some parent emails, including a list of “anti-bullying spirit week” concepts, but nothing overwrought …