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Bringing Up Geeks: How to Protect Your Kid's Childhood in a Grow-Up-Too-Fast World Paperback


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Bringing Up Geeks: How to Protect Your Kid's Childhood in a Grow-Up-Too-Fast World + Don't Let the Kids Drink the Kool-Aid: Confronting the Left's Assault on Our Families, Faith, and Freedom + The Perfect World Inside My Minivan -- One mom's journey through the streets of suburbia
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley Trade; Berkley Trade Pbk. Ed edition (July 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0425221563
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425221563
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.6 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #660,822 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

“Columnist, author and mother Hicks (The Perfect World Inside My Minivan) reminds us that raising children, difficult in itself, can become a Herculean task at odds with the world around us. Hicks explains how parents can protect their children’s innocence while teaching thoughtfulness, critical thinking skills, proper behavior and spirituality to better help them navigate childhood obstacles-peer pressure, pop culture and ubiquitous media input-and pave the road for healthy, engaged adulthood. Using stories and examples from her own life, Hicks sets out ten rules for parents to follow; in a curious turn of phrase, Hicks reclaims the childhood taunt "GEEK" by defining it as a "genuine, enthusiastic, empowered kid," and turns around several other concepts-"brainiac," "late bloomer," "sheltered," "homebody"-to find their true value. The ideal outcome is a child who’s socially connected but immune to the negative effects of peer pressure, advertising and media. Hicks’s helpful, strident guide is conversational and at times humorous, encouraging assertive parenting and independent thinking (saying "no," disregarding other parents’ ideas), with action plans to implement, further advice drawn from experts and a copious resource list.”
Publisher’s Weekly

"Marybeth Hicks reminds us that it is more important to be our children's parents than it is to be their friends. Her book is a go-to guide when it’s time to set limits on how much and what our children are exposed to in this world of celebrity, mass media and affluence."
--Chris Hansen, Dateline NBC Correspondent & Author, To Catch a Predator: Protecting your kids from online enemies already in your home

“Every so often a book comes along that I tell my friends they absolutely must read… Read this book, declare your status as a geek supporter or geek parent, and create a better life for your family… This is the time for us to take back our children’s childhoods, and in doing so to claim our role as strong, protective parents.”
--Dr. Kimberly M. Thompson, Associate Professor and Director of the Kids Risk Project, Harvard School of Public Health

“Today’s popular culture is robbing from an entire generation of children their most treasured possession – the sweet innocence of youth. Bringing up Geeks is a breath of fresh air, and we owe Marybeth Hicks a debt of gratitude. It’s required reading for any parent struggling to raise a child in a society that’s lost its moral compass.”
--L. Brent Bozell, President, Media Research Center, and founder of the Parents Television Council

"In an era when children are being systematically robbed of their childhood, Marybeth Hicks offers sound advice on how to let kids be kids and still grow up to be fulfilled, responsible, well-rounded adults. Bringing Up Geeks makes more sense than anything I’ve ever read on the subject of raising children."
--Pat Sajak, father, husband and host of “Wheel of Fortune”

"Marybeth Hicks writes with a keen eye and a mother's loving heart in this hilarious guide to raising a child you can actually take out in public without cringing. Brava to Marybeth and her original and comedic voice."
--Adriana Trigiani, New York Times Best-selling author

"Bringing up Geeks is the most reassuring and valuable thing I have read concerning my most important job...being a parent. I want to raise my kids to embrace the right values, and not to simply seek out the ‘cool’ route. I want them to have the confidence and conviction to follow their hearts and recognize what is truly important to them. Bringing up Geeks brings real clarity to a complicated process."
Jay Bilas, Husband, father, lawyer and ESPN basketball analyst

"Let's cut to the chase: Every parent in America should own and read this book. Parents who don't will be at a huge disadvantage, because it brilliantly helps them understand and deal effectively and wisely with raising a child in our culture today. That's the most important and difficult job there is -- and this book is simply an ENORMOUS help. It could have just been titled THE PARENT'S HANDBOOK. Do yourself and your kids a big favor: get this book and USE it! You'll be thanking the author for many years to come."
--Eric Metaxas, VeggieTales writer and author Amazing Grace: William Wilberforce and the Heroic Campaign to End Slavery and Everything You Always Wanted to Know About God (but were afraid to ask)

"Marybeth Hicks has provided readers of The Washington Times with years of parenting wisdom and her new book Bringing Up Geeks promises to add to that extraordinary body of sage advice for every family seeking to engage the hearts, souls and minds of their children in the midst of the current culture wars."
--John Solomon, Editor in Chief, The Washington Times

"Hooray for Marybeth Hicks! In her funny, original and engaging new book, she shows us everything good about parenting against the culture. Far from being a nerd, this mom inspires us to raise GEEK kids by helping us see how they will be so much more cool than their peers when it comes to finding real joy, in today's world -- and tomorrow's."
--Betsy Hart, Syndicated Columnist & Author, It Takes a Parent: How the Culture of Pushover Parenting is Hurting Our Kids -- And What to do About It

“Right on to raising happy, independent GEEKS! Rules and limits don’t stultify children any more than strict Iambic pentameter stultified Shakespeare. Marybeth Hicks encourages parents to stick to their guns and buck the sexy/cynical/smart alec kiddie culture that most parents actually hate, but feel powerless to fight. I just hope it’s not too late for me and my own kids!”
--Lenore Skenazy, Columnist, New York Sun

“Marybeth Hicks has raised the bar for families. Bringing Up Geeks boldly challenges adults to act like their children’s parents instead of their buddies. Geeks are the new cool.”
--Lori Borgman, Indianapolis Star columnist; Author, I Was a Better Mother Before I Had Kids

Bringing Up Geeks puts a positive spin on being a geek. Hicks offers insightful rationale for raising brainy, sheltered, and principled children, along with an arsenal of helpful anecdotes and sound advice. It’s cool to be uncool, and incorporating this paradigm shift will allow kids to enjoy the innocence of their childhoods, rather than be swept into our highly sexualized mainstream culture. “
--Rebecca Hagelin, Vice President, The Heritage Foundation; Author, Home Invasion: Protecting Your Family in a Culture That’s Gone Stark Raving Mad

“At last, someone is telling parents it’s better to raise a kid for success in life than to be cool in the 7th grade. If your family is teetering at the brink of today’s culture of cool (or even if you’ve been swallowed whole), pick up this book. Marybeth Hicks has emerged from the trenches to endorse common sense and courage in parenting.”
--Jen Singer, Founder, Mommasaid.net; Author, You’re a Good Mom (and Your Kids Aren’t So Bad Either)

"If you’re worried about your kids growing up too fast and struggle to keep your kids from the potentially harmful effects of MySpace, MTV and racy music lyrics, Bringing Up Geeks has the answers you've been looking for. Hicks' practical, reassuring and common sense advice is a Godsend for moms and dads, whether they're just starting a family or have already hit the teen years."
--Tim Bete, Director, Erma Bombeck Writers' Workshop & Author, Guide to Pirate Parenting

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Marybeth Hicks is the weekly family columnist for The Washington Times and is a frequent speaker on parenting in today’s culture. Her first book was The Perfect World Inside My Minivan: One Mom’s Journey Through the Streets of Suburbia. She lives in the Midwest with her husband and four children. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Marybeth Hicks is a weekly columnist for the The Washington Times and the founder and editor of OntheCulture.com, a blog for American women about the things that matter most. She is the author of Don't Let the Kids Drink the Kool-Aid: Confronting the Left's Assault on Our Families, Faith, and Freedom (Regnery Publishers, 2011), Bringing up GEEKS: How to Protect Your Kid's Childhood in a Grow-up-too-fast World (Penguin/Berkley, 2008) and The Perfect World Inside My Minivan-One Mom's Journey Through the Streets of Suburbia (Faith Publishing, 2006).

Marybeth began her career as a writer in the Reagan White House, and later was a communications specialist in the educational, healthcare and corporate sectors. A Michigan resident, she served as a gubernatorial appointee to the board of the Michigan Children's Trust Fund. She currently serves on the national advisory board of the Parents Television Council.

Marybeth Hicks is a graduate of Michigan State University. She and her husband make their home in Michigan and are the parents of four children.

Customer Reviews

My recommendation is to READ this book!
Lisa H. Jones
As a statistician I am always very concerned about how people paraphrase the results of research studies and package it up for their own readers.
baby
Ms Hicks does a good job explaining how you can lovingly protect your kids in a Bratz doll, tweens-dressed-like-hookers world.
Patricia Herr

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By A. McClure on August 13, 2008
Format: Paperback
This book successfully balances humor with concrete tips about how to raise children who do not succumb to the pressures of our media-driven, sex-saturated society. The author is a family columnist by trade, so she naturally draws heavily from her own experiences raising children. Even if your family or parenting experiences differ from hers, this book is still excellent food for thought. Bringing Up Geeks identifies unhealthy social influences noted by media and child development experts; points out the often counter-cultural traits exhibited by "genuine, enthusiastic, empowered kids;"and offers clear examples of how to help your children cultivate these traits. It's not an easy task to raise children who remain engaged with society but have the courage to resist its pressures. This book will help parents critically examine cultural norms for childhood and child rearing and then equip them with concrete techniques to use with their own families.
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26 of 29 people found the following review helpful By J. Wood on July 20, 2008
Format: Paperback
I had often commented to my husband that what I really wanted for my son was for him to be a geek; I wanted for him to be different but confident. Consequently, this book naturally caught my eye. It has helped me focus on the big picture. (What character traits do I want to develop in my child? How do I raise a child in a materialistic society?) With humor and grace, Marybeth Hicks had me laughing out loud at the troubles of parenting today. I highly recommend it!
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52 of 63 people found the following review helpful By CA Mummy on August 6, 2008
Format: Paperback
While I believe that Ms. Hicks is passionate about the subject matter, this book is not the parenting guide I was expecting. Be prepared for story after story about how what she did made her kids perfect. There is little outside research (despite a lengthy bibliography to support one-off statistics), and essentially no examples outside her family. The book is poorly organized - each chapter explains why her parenting tip is important, and then goes into the actual tips - the flow is quite painful. I should have looked at the endorsements listed on Amazon before purchasing. (No offense to Pat Sajak, but I'm not sure he's an authority on parenting, sociology, etc.) She also lost my confidence when she mentioned that she thinks TV for preschoolers is ok. I believe her words were, "my kids turned out ok". My advice is to look at this book at a library or book store and read the last few pages of each chapter. I would have given this book one star, but at least Ms. Hicks is trying. If you want a serious book on the subject written by a child psychologist, I highly recommend The Blessing of a Skinned Knee, by Wendy Mogel.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Eric Klein on September 25, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Overall I think this is a good book. Marybeth Hicks is earnest, she obviously knows what she's talking about, and there IS a lot of good information in this book.

I think my two chief quibbles are that she and I define geek somewhat differently, so this book wasn't quite what I was expecting when I got it, and her set of moral values and fears are a bit different than mine (not radically so though) and so a lot the things she really emphasizes I think are overblown, whereas some things I think are quite important are sort of neglected.

I'm a geek. I grew up a geek. I was raised by geeks. I think of a geek as someone who is extremely interested and knowledgeable about some subject (or group of subjects), even when it might be unfashionable to be so. I don't think it requires you to be a social outcast, but I do think it usually puts you in with a group of other similar people who are sort of on the outside (mostly because the people who are on the inside, socially speaking, are sort of boring). Most importantly though (in the context of this book), I think of it as always exploring and open to new ideas (at least from a science/tech standpoint). Mrs. Hicks gets a lot of this completely right, however she is so afraid of the internet and predators (perhaps due to too much media exposure herself) that I think in some ways she has become a bit of a technophobe. In one section of the book where she talks about guiding kids to hobbies, she mentions electronics. I immediately thought of Radio Shack circuitry kits of my childhood, or programmable legos, or things along those lines.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By J. Warfle on May 6, 2012
Format: Paperback
When I bought this book I thought it would be more about being a pop culture geek, like in the GeekDad books. Instead, geek here means polite and "uncool". It was still a fairly good book until I got to the chapter on religion, where the author extolls the benefits of religion for parenting. I'm a Christian, but it makes me a little uncomfortable when people don't acknowledge that a person can be an atheist or agnostic and still raise a healthy, moral kid. It feels a little judgmental.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By J. Deacon on October 4, 2008
Format: Paperback
Thanks to Marybeth Hick's "Bringing Up Geeks", 'the culture of cool' and 'GEEK' are my new buzz words! 'The culture of cool' refers to what I think is this (and some older) generation's greatest Achilles Heel, the need to be cool (and the unhealthy habits and mindsets that this need entails). And the best way to avoid this weakness of needing to be cool is to be a 'GEEK' (Genuine, Enthusiastic, Empowered Kid). "Bringing Up Geeks" is a needed and unique book, one that is easy and fun to read, and one that I hope turns into a movement (think on-campus GEEK clubs). If you do not want your kids (or future kids) to be glued to their computers and IPODS and cell phones, dominated by their peers, judging others on their clothing and technological possessions, and unable to carry on conversations and interact in healthy manners, then this book is for you. Or, if you already raise your kids as GEEKS but would appreciate referring others to a book that explains why you do what you do, then this book is for you. Or if you've ever thought that cool kids are putting on an act and look quite lame (to those who have taken the Matrix's red pill), then this is the book for you. As grade after grade enters adulthood with all their dysfunctional and unsocialized habits (technological, social, entertainment, etc.), our world, sadly, accommodates bit by bit. Anyone outside of that world (Geeks, cool peers on the fence about "cooldom", and reformed cool kids) can make a difference by bucking conformity and the culture of cool. And "Bringing Up Geeks" will set them on a healthy path.Read more ›
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