This holiday season, many parents are hoping only that Santa delivers the answer to their most pressing parenting issue. Why won’t my toddler eat anything but candy? How do I help my daughter make friends? Why is my son failing math? Why is every family but ours able to balance sports, an instrument and homework? Will she ever put that cell phone down? Our carpool is a disaster! A girlfriend!?
Dear Santa, please help!
So here’s a list of great books about parenting, our children and education. Some will make you laugh out loud at yourself or your kids. An occasional chapter may make you cry. They all provide guidance that you can take or leave. But the best thing about these books is that you realize you are not alone.
My favorite of 2013 was Masterminds and Wingmen by Rosalind Wiseman. Wiseman is the best-selling author of Queen Bees and Wannabes, which I hear is the go-to book for mothers of girls as they approach adolescence. I happen to have three boys, so I fell for the subtitle, “helping our boys cope with schoolyard power, locker room tests, girlfriends, and the new rules of Boy World.” Apparently, asking boys how their day was as soon as you pick them up from school is totally wrong. Who knew?! This book made me laugh, changed our time in the car, and made me wonder even more about what makes my boys tick. Wiseman’s great interviews with boys are the backbone of the text, which makes her recommendations hit home in a such reasonable way. This is a book from which you will end up reading out loud to your friends over the phone. Great for book clubs!