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Madeline Levine

Preparing Our Kids to Thrive in an Uncertain and Rapidly Changing World

In The Price of Privilege, Dr. Madeline Levine was the first to correctly identify the deficits created by parents giving kids of privilege too much of the wrong things and not enough of the right things. Continuing to address the mistaken notions about what children need to thrive in Teach Your Children Well, Dr. Levine tore down the myth that good grades, high test scores, and college acceptances should define the parenting endgame. In Ready or Not, she continues to show how these same parenting practices, combined with a need to shelter children from discomfort and anxiety, are setting future generations up to fail. She offers help to parents to prepare their children to thrive in an unpredictable, rapidly changing and digital world.

Increasingly, the world has become disturbing, unfamiliar and even threatening. In response, protective pressure-filled parenting styles that push children to excel is leading to a generation of young people who are overwhelmed, exhausted, distressed—and unprepared for the future that awaits them.

But there is hope. Using the latest developments in neuroscience and epigenetics as well as extensive research, Dr. Levine identifies the skills that children need to succeed in a tumultuous future. Most important, Dr. Levine offers day-to-day solutions parents can use to raise kids who are prepared, enthusiastic, and ready to face an unknown future with confidence and optimism.

Dr. Levine is also a co-founder of Challenge Success, a program of the Stanford University Graduate School of Education that focuses on providing parents and schools with the tools they need to raise healthy, motivated kids in a fast paced world with a narrow and an increasingly outdated definition of success.


December 9, 2019


Lori Duron

Managing Our Kids’ Stress
From Pre-School through High School

Come connect and learn how we can support our kids in managing stress from pre-school through high-school. Dr. Lisa Damour is a psychologist, author, teacher, speaker, and consultant who writes the monthly ‘Adolescence’ column for the New York Times. Her two published works, Untangled and Under Pressure: Confronting the Epidemic of Stress and Anxiety in Children and Teenagers, provide practical strategies for helping students navigate this often challenging time. In her talk, Lisa will draw on her extensive research on adolescents to teach parents about:

  • the difference between healthy and unhealthy stress and anxiety
  • research-based practical fixes to help young people manage naturally occurring tension, toxic stress, and anxiety
  • how to help our sons and daughters build strength and confidence throughout their school years.


March 13, 2019




Laurie Santos

What Makes Humans Happy

Psychologist Laurie Santos is an expert on human cognition, its origins, and the evolutionary biases that influence our all-too imperfect life choices. As a professor at Yale and a research scientist, Dr. Santos teaches happiness and well-being via behavioral change through positive psychology. Dr. Santos believes students can learn tools to be more grateful, procrastinate less and increase social connections. She believes that those positive habits will decrease mental health issues among students and create happier and more motivated people. In her talk, Dr. Santos provides advice on how to engage our uniquely human faculties to counteract evolution, choose more wisely, and live happier lives.


February 6, 2019




Lori Duron

Raising My Rainbow
Adventures in Raising A Gender Creative Child

Author and advocate Lori Duron gives a frank, heartfelt and humorous account of her family’s adventures of (initial) distress and (eventual) happiness raising a gender creative son. Duron will explain the differences between sex, gender, sexuality and other related concepts in an easy-to-understand way. She’ll share how her family navigated the often challenging but never dull privilege of raising a gender creative, LGBTQ son and offer tips for supporting kids like hers to beat the statistics and launch them healthily into adulthood.

Lori Duron is the author of the award-winning book Raising My Rainbow: Adventures in Raising a Fabulous, Gender Creative Son, the first parenting memoir to chronicle the journey of raising a gender nonconforming child, and is based on her popular blog RaisingMyRainbow.com which has 4 million readers in 199 countries. Raising My Rainbow was awarded the American Library Association‘s 2014 Stonewall Award in the non-fiction category; was one of Publisher’s Weekly’s Best Books of 2013; and a PEOPLE Magazine Good Read. Duron’s blog has been named one of BlogHer’s Voices of the Year four times; one of Ignite Social Media’s “100 Women Bloggers You Should be Reading;” one of Circle of Moms “Top 25 SoCal Moms;” and one of Parents Magazine’s blogs that are “Most Likely To Change The World.” Duron was awarded PFLAG’s 2015 Flag Bearer Award.

October 2, 2018




Yong Zhao

Reaching for Greatness
Empowering Your Kids to Harness Their Talents to Conquer the Challenges of the Modern World

Dr. Yong Zhao calls for a paradigm shift in education and brings extensive evidence to show that every child has both the potential and the need to become great. He advocates that the goal of education is to help each child discover and develop their unique strengths and passions so that they can be best prepared to meet the challenges of the modern world including globalization, technology, smart machines and the need to create value for others. To do so, parents and educators need to make education personalized by the child, instead of personalized for the child. Together, we need to help each child find what uniquely makes them great.

Dr. Zhao currently serves as a Foundation Distinguished Professor at the University of Kansas. His research focuses on the implications of globalization and technology on education and has published 100 articles and 20 books. He is a recipient of the Early Career Award from the American Educational Research Association and was named one of the 2012 Ten Most Influential People in Educational Technology by the Tech & Learn Magazine. He is an elected fellow of the International Academy for Education. His latest book, World Class Learners, has won several awards including the Society of Professors of Education Book Award (2013), Association of Education Publishers’ (AEP) Judges’ Award and Distinguished Achievement Award in Education Leadership (2013). Learn more about Dr. Zhao at zhaolearning.com.

April 25, 2018




Laura Kastner

Getting to Calm
Raising Healthy, Caring, and Successful Children in Our Angst-Ridden World Today

“It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men.” — Frederick Douglass (1817-1895)

The last five decades have produced solid research about what kinds of parenting predict high achievement, social and emotional competence and a strong character. Pulling it off is quite another matter. Amidst good intentions, parents end up fighting with their kids about school achievement, disrespect, noncompliance, lazy work habits and all manner of household hassles. With touch screens as a constant source of entertainment and distraction, families have a tougher time than ever figuring out how to raise healthy children. This presentation will focus on how parents can be effective and skillful in handling typical parenting challenges, with the understanding that we all share the all important goal of maintaining a loving, reliable and affectionate bond with our children even when it feels like kids are pushing limits almost all the time.

Laura Kastner, Ph.D. is a clinical professor in both the psychology department and the department of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at University of Washington. Dr. Kastner is a nationally recognized author and speaker and has appeared on The Today Show and many TV news programs, as well as written for parenting magazines and has authored five parenting books. Learn more about Dr. Kastner at www.laurakastnerphd.com.

Oct. 4, 2017




Julie Lythcott-Haims

A Conversation with Julie Lythcott-Haims on Her New Memoir—
Real American

Julie Lythcott-Haims, the New York Times bestselling author of How to Raise an Adult, has written a different kind of book this time out—a deeply personal, biting, and affecting account of her life growing up as a biracial Black woman in America in Real American: A Memoir.

A courageous, achingly honest meditation on what it means to come to consciousness as a mixed-race child and adult in a nation where Black lives weren’t meant to matter.  —  Michelle Alexander, New York Times bestselling author of The New Jim Crow

Julie Lythcott-Haims served as the dean of freshmen and undergraduate advising at Stanford University, where she received the Dinkelspiel Award for her contributions to the undergraduate experience. She holds a BA from Stanford, a JD from Harvard Law, and an MFA in writing from the California College of the Arts. She is a member of the San Francisco Writers Grotto and resides in the Bay Area with her husband, their two teenagers, and her mother. Learn more about her at www.julielythcotthaims.com.

Oct. 4, 2017




Susan Cain

Empowering Introverted Kids in a Noisy World

One third to one half of all people are introverts, according to research. Acclaimed author, quiet revolutionary, and self-described introvert Susan Cain will help parents and educators understand how to unleash the strengths of introverted kids in a culture that celebrates extroverts.

SUSAN CAIN is the author of the bestsellers Quiet Power: The Secret Strengths of Introverts, and Quiet: The Power of Introverts in A World That Can’t Stop Talking. Her writing has appeared in the The New York Times, The Atlantic, The Wall Street Journal, and many other publications. Her record-smashing TED talk has been viewed over 17 million times. Cain has spoken at Google, the U.S. Treasury, Harvard, Yale, West Point and the US Naval Academy. She is an honors graduate of Princeton and Harvard Law School. Learn more about her at www.quietrev.com.

April 25, 2017




Howard Stevenson

Talking to Our Children About Race
A Matter of Life and Health

As the world around us has become increasingly diverse, it is important that our children develop knowledge, self-awareness and skills that will allow them to navigate cross-cultural relationships with respect. Dr. Stevenson will provide an exploration of racial stress and examine racial literacy as a capacity for improving conversations and relationships.

Dr. Howard Stevenson is the Constance Clayton Professor of Urban Education, Professor of Africana Studies, in the Human Development & Quantitative Methods Division of the Graduate School of Education at the University of Pennsylvania. He is the Director of the Racial Empowerment Collaborative at Penn, designed to promote racial literacy in education, health, and justice institutions. He is also the Director of Forward Promise, the national program office funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, to provide philanthropic support for organizations designed to improve the health of boys and young men of color and their families and is the author of Promoting Racial Literacy in Schools: Differences That Make a Difference. Dr. Stevenson has 30 years of experience as a clinical supervisor and therapist in family and child psychotherapy.

Feb. 8, 2017




Rosalind Wiseman

Queen Bees and Masterminds
Navigating Cliques, Bullying, and Social Hierarchies

Mastering communication breakdowns with our children and navigating clique territory is no easy task, especially in the age of social media. Rosalind Wiseman will share how social group dynamics influence kids’ interactions and offer step-by-step advice on how to teach young people to treat each other with dignity.

Rosalind Wiseman, is the celebrated author of Queen Bees and Wannabees and Masterminds and Wingmen. A widely respected parenting educator and media spokesperson on bullying, ethical leadership, and the use of social media, she has been profiled in numerous publications including The New York Times and The Washington Post, and is a frequent guest on shows like Anderson Cooper 360, The Today Show, and Good Morning America. Visit Rosalind's website.

Oct. 25, 2016




Jo Boaler

Mathematical Mindsets
Unleashing Students’ Potential through Creative Math, Inspiring Messages, and Innovative Teaching

Banish math anxiety and give students of all ages a clear roadmap to success. In this lecture, Dr. Boaler will reveal how to turn mistakes and struggles into valuable learning experiences, provide examples of rich mathematical activities to replace rote learning, and explain ways to give students a positive math mindset. She will provide research-based practical strategies to help teachers and parents show all children, even those who are convinced that they are bad at math, that they can enjoy and succeed in math.

Jo Boaler, Ph.D., is a Professor of Mathematics Education at Stanford University and internationally recognized expert on teaching mathematics. She is the author of numerous research articles and nine books, including Mathematical Mindsets, What’s Math Got To Do With It? How Parents and Teachers Can Help Children Learn to Love Their Least Favorite Subject, and The Elephant in the Classroom. Dr. Boaler co-founded youcubed.org to give teachers and parents the resources and ideas they need to inspire and excite students about mathematics.

April 27, 2016




Laurence Steinberg

Age of Opportunity
Lessons from the New Science of Adolescence

Adolescence now lasts longer than ever, and the adolescent brain is surprisingly malleable. These new discoveries make this time of life crucial in determining a person’s ultimate success and happiness. In this lecture, Laurence Steinberg, one of the world’s leading authorities on adolescence, will discuss the teenage brain’s potential for change, the elongation of adolescence as a developmental stage, and the implications of each for how we parent, educate, and understand young people.

Laurence Steinberg, Ph.D., is the Distinguished University Professor and Aura H. Carnell Professor of Psychology at Temple University. An internationally recognized expert on psychological development during adolescence, Dr. Steinberg is the author of 17 books, including Age of Opportunity: Lessons From the New Science of Adolescence.

March 3, 2016




Ana Homayoun

Building a Better Blueprint
The Intersection of School, Social Media and Stress

Working with kids in today’s digital world has never been so complex, and keeping up with the latest social media trends can seem like a never-ending challenge. Today’s technology-infused learning environments play host to many distractions, including social media. Many teens and young adults typically use online tools to promote and maintain community, and with that opportunity comes potential challenges. With empathy and humor, noted author and educator Ana Homayoun often helps parents and educators understand the new world of social media socialization and provides practical tips on how we can all work to make better choices around social media use and overall wellness.

Ana Homayoun is a noted teen and millennial expert, author, speaker and educator. Her upcoming book, Social Media Wellness: Successful Strategies for Educators, Parents and Students, discusses modern social media dilemmas and offers prescriptive solutions. With empathy, humor, and understanding, Ana creates a world where individuals feel empowered to create a framework for achieving a life on their own terms. She is also the author of That Crumpled Paper Was Due Last Week: Helping Disorganized and Distracted Boys Succeed in School and Life and The Myth of the Perfect Girl: Helping Our Daughters Find Authentic Success and Happiness in School and Life. She has been quoted or featured in The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, San Francisco Chronicle, New York Post, ABC News, and dozens of other publications. She is a frequent guest on NPR.

April 22, 2015




Beverly Daniel Tatum Ph.D.

Color Blind or Color Inclusive?
Raising Culturally Competent Children in the 21st Century

In a time when racial violence and police brutality continue to dominate news headlines, having meaningful conversations about race with our children is more important than ever. But how? Beverly Daniel Tatum, a renowned authority on the psychology of racism, asserts that we do not know how to talk about our racial differences: whites are afraid of using the wrong words and being perceived as “racist”, while parents of color are afraid of exposing their children to painful racial realities too soon. Using real-life examples and the latest research, Tatum will present strong evidence that straight talk about our racial identities–whatever they may be–is essential if we are serious about facilitating communication across racial and ethnic divides.

Dr. Beverly Daniel Tatum served as president of Spelman College from 2002-2015 and is the author of Can We Talk About Race? And Other Conversations in an Era of School Resegregation (2007), “Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?” and Other Conversations about Race (1997), and Assimilation Blues: Black Families in a White Community (1987). She holds a B.A. degree in psychology from Wesleyan University, and an M.A. and Ph.D. in clinical psychology from University of Michigan as well as an M.A. in Religious Studies from Hartford Seminary.

April 22, 2015




Jessica Lahey

The Gift of Failure
Fostering Intrinsic Motivation and Resilience in Kids

What’s the best way to motivate students to own their education and develop resilience?

Research has shown that the key to all these things is intrinsic motivation, or motivation that comes from within. Intrinsic motivation can only happen when children experience autonomy and competence, and feel connected to the people in their lives and the material they are learning. Jessica Lahey summarizes the current research on autonomy-supportive parenting and teaching, competence, rewards, praise, and failure. Finally, Jessica outlines what parents and educators need to give students what they need in order to stay motivated over the long term.

Jessica Lahey is an educator, writer, and speaker. She has been a middle and high school teacher of English, Latin, and writing for a decade. She writes the bi-weekly “Parent-Teacher Conference” advice column for The New York Times and her work appears regularly in The Atlantic and Vermont Public Radio. Her book, The Gift of Failure: How the Best Parents Learn to Let Go So Their Children Can Succeed, will be published by HarperCollins in August, 2015. Jessica earned a J.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a concentration in juvenile and education law. She lives in New Hampshire with her husband, writer and physician Tim Lahey, and her two sons.

April 22, 2015




Claude Steele

How Stereotypes Affect Us and What We Can Do

Stereotype threat, the subconscious fear that our actions or performance will confirm negative assumptions about our social identity, affects us all. While none of us wants to be defined by gender, sexual orientation, race, profession, age, nationality or political affiliation, all of us have experienced stereotype threat, whether we are aware of it or not. Dr. Claude Steele will show us how it inhibits academic and athletic performance and constrains our choices and behaviors. He will speak to parents and educators about how to recognize and neutralize the most damaging stereotype threats in our own educational landscapes.

Claude M. Steele is Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost at UC Berkeley. Prior to this appointment, he served as the I. James Quillen Dean for the School of Education at Stanford University, and before that, as Provost of Columbia University. He is recognized as a leader in the field of social psychology and for his commitment to the systematic application of social science to problems of major societal significance.

Dr. Steele is the author of Whistling Vivaldi: And Other Clues to How Stereotypes Affect Us and What We Can Do and has published articles in numerous scholarly journals, including the American Psychologist, the Journal of Applied Social Psychology and the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology.

February 11 2014




Ron Lieber

The Opposite
of Spoiled

Talking to Our
Children About
Money and Values

Kids are curious. It’s their job to figure out the world. But when they start asking how much money we make, why we won’t buy them things if we’re not poor and why their friend’s apartment is so much bigger or smaller, it’s hard to know what to say in the moment. In this presentation, Ron will talk about how to keep kids modest in a materialistic world, use allowance to teach patience and thrift and end the epidemic of silence around money in families and our communities.

Ron Lieber has been the “Your Money” columnist for The New York Times since 2008. Before that, he was a personal finance columnist for The Wall Street Journal and a writer at Fast Company and Fortune.

His first book, co-authored with his friend Colin Hall, encouraged teenagers to take a year off before or during college and was a New York Times bestseller in 1996. His columns about student loans won business journalism’s highest honor, the Loeb Award, in 2011. Ron lives in Brooklyn, NY with his wife (and colleague) Jodi Kantor and their 9 year-old daughter. He speaks regularly about parenting, kids, money and values to parents, educators and students of all ages.

october 7 2014




Christine Carter, PhD

Fostering Success Raising Kids Who Are Grateful, Gritty
and Kind

Drawing on what psychology, sociology and neuroscience have shown about confidence, gratitude and grit — and using her own chaotic and often hilarious real-world adventures to demonstrate dos and don’ts in action — Christine Carter, PhD gives parents practical tips for creating families, schools and communities that nurture happy children including:

  • The relationship between grit, perfectionism and success
  • Tips on how to change your kids’ attitude into gratitude
  • The spirit of kindness — how to raise kind, compassionate and loving children.

A sociologist and happiness expert at UC Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center, Christine Carter, Ph.D., is the author of The Sweet Spot: How to Find Your Groove at Work and Home (January 2015) and Raising Happiness: 10 Simple Steps for More Joyful Kids and Happier Parents (2011). A sought-after keynote speaker, Dr. Carter also writes an award-winning blog, which is frequently syndicated on the HuffingtonPost, PsychologyToday.com, PositivelyPositive.com, Medium.com and several other websites.

Dr. Carter has been quoted or featured in The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Washington Post, Parenting and dozens of other publications. She has appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show, The Dr. Oz Show, The Today Show, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, ABC World News with Diane Sawyer, PBS, as well as NPR and BBC Radio.

Dr. Carter has helped thousands of people find more joy in their lives through her books, online classes, coaching and speaking engagements.


march 12 2014




Richard Louv

The Hybrid Mind: Balancing Nature and Technology

“The more high-tech our lives become, the more nature we need.”
— Richard Louv

In his latest book, The Nature Principle, bestselling author Richard Louv offers a new vision of the future in which our lives are as immersed in nature as they are in technology, and challenges us to rethink the way we live.

Louv explains how we can tap into the restorative powers of nature, and offers practical tips about how to bring nature back into our lives via “deep green exercise”. His work is supported by groundbreaking research (hospital patients with tree views need less pain medication than those with brick views) and compelling personal stories (bear-sniffing with his family in Alaska). He believes that by creating a “nature-rich” society, we can boost our mental acuity and creativity; promote health and wellness; build smarter and more sustainable businesses, communities, and economies; and ultimately strengthen human bonds.

Richard Louv is an acclaimed journalist and author of eight books, a frequent speaker, co-founder and chairman emeritus of the Children and Nature Network (www.childrenandnature.org) and past advisor to the Ford Foundation. His bestselling book Last Child in the Woods sparked an international movement to reconnect kids and nature. In it, he coined the now oft-used term, “Nature-Deficit Disorder.” He is a recipient of the National Audubon Society’s Audubon Medal, among many other honors.

SPEAK is pleased to host Richard Louv in partnership with the Presidio Trust, which stewards the Presidio in conjunction with the National Park Service. To learn more about Louv, visit www.richardlouv.com. For information about the Presidio Trust, visit www.presidio.gov.


oct 16 2013




Tony Wagner

Creating Innovators:
The Making of Young People that Will Change the World

Play. Passion. Purpose.

According to Harvard educator and author Tony Wagner, these are the forces that drive young innovators. And innovation, he believes, is today’s most essential real-world skill.

In his new book, Creating Innovators: The Making of Young People that Will Change the World, Wagner explores ways in which we can nurture our children’s creativity and spark their imaginations. He helps us understand how to teach young people to learn from their failures and persevere, thus developing their capacities to become innovators. To illustrate his research, Wagner profiles compelling young American innovators—such as Kirk Phelps, who managed the development of Apple’s first iPhone, and Jodie Wu, who founded a company that lets Tanzanian farmers generate bicycle-powered energy.

Wagner also introduces us to forward-thinking schools and workplaces across the country. He explains how they are developing cultures of innovation based on collaboration, interdisciplinary problem-solving, and intrinsic motivation.

Tony Wagner is the first Innovation Education Fellow at the Technology & Entrepreneurship Center at Harvard. His prior experience includes founding Harvard’s Change Leadership Group; twelve years as a high school teacher, K-8 principal and university professor; and founding executive director of Educators for Social Responsibility. Tony earned an M.A.T. and an Ed.D. at the Harvard University Graduate School of Education. He is the author of numerous articles and five books. His 2008 book, The Global Achievement Gap, was an international best seller.


april 23 2013




Po Bronson

Top Dog:
The Science of Winning and Losing

What is healthy competition for children?

Why can one child rise to the occasion, while another child crumbles under pressure?

How can children not just survive short-term stress, but learn to benefit from it?

What biological and socialized factors affect how girls and boys approach risk differently?

Why are the hormones of collaboration the same hormones of competition?

How can creativity be encouraged in a competitive environment?

In their new book, New York Times bestselling authors Po Bronson and Ashley Merryman explore the science of competition through sports, business, politics, genetics, and neuroscience. But they also have a lot to say about education. Po Bronson will show us how to tip the odds of success in our favor—whether in school, on the playing field, or at home. Bronson reveals the hidden factors that fuel our determination, passion, and drive to compete. He argues that learning to turn competitiveness off is just as important as turning it on, and that every child can learn to compete—the competition just has to be the right kind. These days, too little of it is.

Bronson and Top Dog coauthor Ashley Merryman are also the authors of the New York Times bestseller NurtureShock. They have received the PEN USA Literary Award for Journalism and the American Association for the Advancement of Science Award for Science Journalism, among other honors. Bronson is also the author of The Nudist on the Late Shift and What Should I Do With My Life? among other books.


March 5, 2013




Barbara Coloroso

Teaching Our Kids to Think and Act Ethically

“If we are to raise kids who can think and act ethically, we don’t begin with
the thinking or the acting. We begin with caring.”

—Barbara Coloroso

T-shirt slogans... bumper stickers... the Internet...
the evening news...

International best selling author Barbara Coloroso believes children’s ethical education can too easily come from any of the above, and that often the lesson is that the ends justify the means.

Drawing on her years as a teacher and consultant, Coloroso offers practical advice about how we can best nurture our children’s ethical lives, helping them learn to care deeply, share generously, and resist and respond effectively to social aggression.

Addressing parents of toddlers and adolescents alike, Coloroso touches on sibling rivalry, teenage rebellion, the media as educator, and the difference between punishment and discipline. She shares real life suggestions grounded in everyday situations at home and school, in social settings and the world at large. In doing so she urges us to teach our children how to think, not just what to think.

Coloroso is the author of Just Because It's Not Wrong Doesn't Make It Right: From Toddlers to Teens, Teaching Children to Think and Act Ethically, as well as kids are worth it! and The Bully, the Bullied, and the Bystander: Breaking the Cycle of Violence.


Oct. 16, 2012




Wendy MogelAn Evening with
Wendy Mogel, Ph.D.

How do we raise optimistic, resilient, grateful children in a nervous world? How do we navigate the rough waters of the adolescent years with humor? Clinical psychologist and New York Times bestselling author Wendy Mogel explores these and other parenting questions with her trademark wit and warmth.

Building on her books The Blessing of a Skinned Knee and The Blessing of a B Minus, and drawing on new material, Mogel weaves together psychological research and Jewish teachings to offer practical parenting advice in a culture where entitlement and competition abound.

Mogel emphasizes parenting with empathy and guidance instead of micromanagement, and sheds light on when to step into our children's lives and when to step back. She encourages us to resist the urge to over schedule and overprotect our kids, and to promote self-restraint instead of self-centeredness. For parents of older kids, she explains why influence is more effective than control and helps us see beyond the drama of teenage crisis — all with the goal of raising happy kids.

Publisher's Weekly refers to Mogel as "impassioned, lyrical and eminently practical."

Mogel serves on the scientific advisory board of Stanford University School of Education's Challenge Success program, and on the boards of the Center for Early Education and the Counsel for Spiritual Education.


Feb. 28, 2012




Dan SiegelDan Siegel on
The Whole-Brain Child

We all love our children dearly, but at times it seems they conspire to make our lives challenging!

  • Does your kindergartner refuse to get dressed on the busiest school mornings?
  • Does your 10-year-old sulk on the bench instead of playing on the field?
  • Is your young adolescent convinced that everything you do or say is wrong?

According to neuropsychiatrist Daniel J. Siegel, M.D., this is just evidence that our kids’ developing minds are calling the shots. Siegel, author of The Whole-Brain Child: 12 Revolutionary Strategies to Nurture Your Child’s Developing Mind, will speak about the impact of parenting on children’s brain development and the latest research about how young minds are wired and how they mature.

Dr. Siegel will share specific ideas to help parents turn outbursts and arguments into opportunities to foster our children's emotional intelligence—helping us to raise calmer, happier kids along the way. He’ll explain how to use discord to encourage empathy and greater social success, how to appeal to the left brain’s affinity for words and reasoning to calm tantrums and bodily tension, and how to use physical activity to shift children’s moods, among other strategies.

A clinical professor of psychiatry at the UCLA School of Medicine, Dr. Siegel is also on the faculty of the Center for Culture, Brain, and Development and the Co-Director of the Mindful Awareness Research Center at UCLA. He is the Executive Director of the Mindsight Institute, an educational center devoted to promoting insight, compassion, and empathy in individuals, families, institutions and communities.

For more information, visit www.drdansiegel.com.


Oct. 18, 2011




The Talent Code:
Greatness Isn't Born.
It's Grown. Here's How.

Daniel CoyleWhat is the secret of talent, and how do we unlock it?

New York Times bestselling author Daniel Coyle believes the answer has less to do with good genes and more to do with practice—and the things that ignite it.

Coyle visited nine hotbeds of talent around the world—places that seem to breed tennis players, pop stars, and other extraordinary performers in sports, music, math, arts. And he found that each hotbed shared similar traits, as did the superstars themselves. According to Coyle, it comes down to coaching, motivation, and practice—the kind of deep practice that grows and maintains what he calls “skill circuits.”

A parent of four, Coyle will speak about how to maximize potential in ourselves and our children. He’ll explain how motivation works, how to spot when our kids are “ignited,” and will share some of the practice techniques he learned while researching his book.

The Talent Code is Coyle’s third book on performance. Lance Armstrong’s War, a New York Times bestseller, chronicles the year Coyle spent following Lance Armstrong when the cyclist won his record-breaking sixth consecutive Tour de France. Hardball: A Season in the Projects was Sporting News’ book of the year and became the Keanu Reeves movie of the same name. It describes a season of Little League in a tough Chicago housing project.


April 27, 2011




How Big IS a Hormone?...
And Other Important Questions
on the Minds of Kids

Are your children approaching puberty? Or already there? Do you feel ill-equipped to help them navigate the changes that lie ahead?

Though they may not say so, children actually want parents to be their primary resource for information about the "complete body and brain transformation called puberty!" Using candor and humor, speakers Rob Lehman and Julie Metzger will discuss the developmental stages of preteens, the questions and concerns that are on their minds, and strategies for the trusted adults who live and work alongside them. In doing so, Julie and Rob will help parents set the stage for open communication about the physical, social and emotional changes that accompany adolescence. This discussion is highly recommended for parents of children ages 8–16.

Julie Metzger and Robert Lehman have decades of experience with the adolescent and pre-adolescent mindset. They created and now teach the popular “Growing Up” program at Seattle Children’s Hospital and the “Heart to Heart” program out of Stanford’s Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital.

Robert Lehman

Robert Lehman, MD, has devoted his professional career to adolescent health care. As a physician, his practice has focused on teenagers in many different clinical situations, including schools, homeless clinics and public health facilities. He is also a passionate advocate for youth on the local and national level and has been on the University of Washington faculty since 1989. In 1990, he began working with Julie Metzger on the "Growing Up" series.

Julie Metzger Julie Metzger, R.N. and M.N., is a pediatric nurse, writer and educator. She developed her popular "Heart to Heart, For Girls Only" program in 1989, and has taught the class to thousands of mother- daughter teams in Seattle, Palo Alto and the Puget Sound region. She is a co-designer and instructor of several other classes aimed at fostering child-parent communication in adolescence.

Great conversations
For more information about Rob Lehman and Julie Metzger and their new book, visit www.greatconversations.com.


March 22, 2011




Unconditional Parenting:
Beyond Bribes & Threats

Alfie KohnWhat can we do to help children grow into good people? Author Alfie Kohn suggests that merely to ask that question is to understand the limits of conventional approaches to parenting, which are focused more on getting kids to do whatever they’re told. He stresses that controlling techniques such as rewards (including positive reinforcement) and punishments (including time-outs) prove counterproductive over the long haul. What’s more, he believes they lead children to conclude that they’re loved only when they please us or impress us. Kohn will share ideas for working with children rather than doing things to them, and for making sure that they know our care for them is unconditional.

Alfie Kohn is the author of 12 books on education, parenting, and human behavior, including Punished by Rewards, The Schools Our Children Deserve, Unconditional Parenting, The Homework Myth, and Feel-Bad Education (due out this spring). He has written for most of the leading education periodicals and has appeared on Oprah. Time magazine described him as "perhaps the country’s most outspoken critic of education’s fixation on grades (and) test scores."

For more information, visit www.alfiekohn.org.


Oct 26, 2010




Positive Psychology:
The Science of Happiness

Tal Ben-ShaharTal Ben-Shahar, Ph.D. is the New York Times bestselling author of Happier: Learn the Secrets to Daily Joy and Lasting Fulfillment, as well as the recent The Pursuit of Perfect: How to Stop Chasing Perfection and Start Living a Richer, Happier Life.

Discussing the latest scientific research from his field of positive psychology—"the scientific study of optimal human functioning"—Tal Ben-Shahar provides practical ideas for better living by bringing together "the rigor of academia and the accessibility of self-help."* He shares tools that can actually make us happier, including simplifying our lives, expressing gratitude, and realizing that happiness lies at the intersection of pleasure and meaning.

Tal Ben-Shahar is on the faculty of the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya, Israel, where he co-founded the Institute for Positive Psychology in Education. An author and lecturer, his Harvard course on happiness was one of the most popular in the university’s recent history. As a consultant to executives in multi-national corporations, he speaks on topics such as happiness, self-esteem, resilience, goal setting, mindfulness, and leadership. Dr. Ben-Shahar holds a Ph.D. in Organizational Behavior and a B.A. in Philosophy and Psychology from Harvard.

*Source: Tal Ben-Shahar




Smart Parenting
in an Online World

Moderated by Susannah Baldwin

Anne Zehren, President of CommonSense Media, B.J. Fogg, Stanford Professor and author of The Psychology of Facebook, and Matt Levinson, Assistant Head of School and Head of the Middle School at Nueva School, participate in a panel discussion on parenting in the digital age.

This community forum will speak to the unique challenges faced by parents trying to manage and understand the revolution in communication and information technology that is part of their children's lives. It is an extraordinary opportunity for parents to gain insight into the educational, social and psychological implications of growing up as a digital native.

Susannah   Anne Zehren  
Susannah Baldwin   Anne Zehren  
B.J. Fogg   Matt Levinson  
B.J. Fogg   Matt Levinson  



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november 12, 2009






Raising Resilient
Children & Teens

Ken GinsbergDr. Ken Ginsburg, a nationally recognized pediatrician in Adolescent Medicine at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, aims to start a national dialogue among parents and children of all ages to redefine perceptions of success, and evaluate the significant physical and emotional damage that stress and everyday pressure can have on development.

He creates strategies to raise resilient children who are capable of dealing with life's difficulties and learn from personal defeat. Ginsburg is the author of A Parent’s Guide to Building Resilience in Children and Teens: Giving Your Child Roots and Wings and Less Stress, More Success: A New Approach to Guiding Your Teen Through College Admissions and Beyond, with Marilee Jones.


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october 5, 2009



"When Learning Comes Naturally" is available from Jonathan Diamond:



The program is available on VHS and on DVD for $29.95, plus $5.00 shipping and handling.

To order, please visit The Learning Child series website or call 1-888-503-2291.



When Learning Comes Naturally

When Learning Comes NaturallyThe Child Development Institute at Sarah Lawrence College, Hope to Action: Women for a Greener Planet, and the California Academy of Sciences cordially invite you to an evening devoted to exploring the importance of environmental education and connections to nature for school-age children, including the West Coast premiere of the film, When Learning Comes Naturally.

The fourth program in The Learning Child Series, When Learning Comes Naturally was produced for public television by Jonathan Diamond Associates in association with the Sarah Lawrence College Child Development Institute. The film showcases the efforts of four schools and a community institution as they introduce children to the natural world and encourage them -- through play, classroom activities, exploration and their own creative work -- to make a lasting connection to the environment.

Like its companions, this document supports parents and educators in engaging children to become motivated and thoughtful lifelong learners. Screening of this 28-minute film will be followed by a panel discussion with:

  • Jill Bible, Curriculum Developer, Teacher Institute on Science and Sustainability, California Academy of Sciences
  • Jennifer Caldwell, Founder and President, Hope to Action
  • Helena Carmena, Manager of Teacher Services, California Academy of Sciences
  • Jonathan Diamond, Executive Producer, When Learning Comes Naturally
  • Margery Franklin, Psychology Faculty Emerita and Former Director of the Child Development Institute, Sarah Lawrence College
  • Steve Morris, Head of School, The San Francisco School
  • Suzy Schwimmer, Lead Teacher, Sarah Lawrence College Early Childhood Center
  • Carolie Sly, Education Program Director, Center for Ecoliteracy

Moderated by Rachel Grob, Director of the Child Development Institute, Sarah Lawrence College. This event is designed for educators, parents and others with an interest in environmental education, school greening, the relationship between children and nature, and sustainable communities.


March 23, 2009



Publications authored by our speakers are available at booksinc.net.



Nurture the Nature of Children

MichaelMichael Gurian, author of the New York Times bestseller Nurture the Nature, and co-founder of the Gurian Institute, talks about the latest brain research in child and adolescent development and the tools parents need to discover their child’s core nature.

Gurian argues that children are not blank slates to be shaped as we wish, but rather that each child has a unique temper­ament—with specific needs, strengths, vulnerabilities, and learning styles—that cannot be adequately supported with a one-size-fits all approach.

A researcher of brain science and gender differences, Gurian sees a disturbing trend in parents’ increasing willingness to disregard their own instincts, and allowing instead media and society-driven fads to dictate the way they raise their children. Using the latest research in brain science in child and adolescent development, he provides parents with the tools they need to uncover and nurture their child’s core nature—who their child really is—so each child can flourish and thrive.

Michael Gurian is an educator, therapist, corporate consultant, and the bestselling author of twenty-five books published in twenty one languages including The Wonder of Boys, Boys and Girls Learn Differently!, The Wonder of Girls, The Minds of Boys, and Nurture the Nature. He has pioneered efforts to bring neuro-biology and brain research into homes, workplaces, schools and public policy.


November 19, 2008



Publications authored by our speakers are available at booksinc.net.



For Successful Kids:
Redefining Goals

Today we live in a high-pressure, high-stakes environment that is pre-occupied with the easily observable measures of success, such as grades, trophies, and prestigious school admissions. While often romanticized as a simple and carefree time, childhood and adolescence are, in fact, a time of intensive growth and development and this narrow vision of success often impedes healthy maturation.

As a result, we see an unacceptably high level of impairment among our children, even among those seen as “successful.” Our distinguished panel will argue that success is complex, and that character, well-being, emotional intelligence, authenticity, and accomplishment are all necessary components of success. They will present the research data and outline how parents can reassess their view of success and make choices that support their children’s healthy development.

Featured Speakers:

Jim LobdellJim Lobdell, M.A., is an educational consultant and co-founded Teachers’ Curriculum Institute, widely regarded as the nation’s most innovative publisher of K-12 social studies curriculum. He authored several teaching methodology books, including Bring Learning Alive! Engaging All Learners in the Diverse Classroom and advised school districts nationwide on teacher-training and site-based reform.

Madeline LevineMadeline Levine, Ph.D., is a psychologist with over 25 years of experience and is the author of the New York Times best-selling book, The Price of Privilege: How Parental Pressure and Material Advantage are Creating a Generation of Materialistic and Unhappy Kids, and two books on child development and the media, Viewing Violence and See No Evil. Dr. Levine is regularly featured on national media, including such programs as The Early Show, The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer and National Public Radio.

Denise Clark PopeDenise Clark Pope, Ph.D., has taught for the past eight years at the Stanford University School of Education. She directs the SOS: Stressed-Out Students project, a research and intervention effort to help K-12 schools counter the causes of academic stress. She lectures nationally and has appeared on The Today Show, CNN and other national media. Her book, “Doing School”: How We Are Creating a Generation of Stressed Out, Materialistic, and Miseducated Students received the Notable Book in Education by the American School Board Journal.

Slipping Behind, a short film by Vicki Abeles and Julie McDonald, is an in-depth profile of American children and the challenges they face. Slipping Behind asks the question, "Are we preparing our children to lead meaningful, productive lives?" The film features interviews with experts in education, economics history, public health and psychology and offers an intimate look at real families.



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