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Duct Tape Parenting: A Less Is More Approach to Raising Respectful, Responsible, and Resilient Kids Paperback – August 21, 2012

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Duct Tape Parenting: A Less Is More Approach to Raising Respectful, Responsible, and Resilient Kids + How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk + The Whole-Brain Child: 12 Revolutionary Strategies to Nurture Your Child's Developing Mind
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Bibliomotion; 1st edition (August 21, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1937134180
  • ISBN-13: 978-1937134181
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.6 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (112 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #41,871 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

“Parenting books are like diet books: They work for a while and then you're back to blimpdom. Duct Tape Parenting seems like something else – an idea that's workable for the long run, because, at base, it believes in the kids themselves.” (Lenore Skenazy, founder of the book and blog, Free-Range Kids)


Duct Tape Parenting is for every parent who's grown tired of picking up after the kids, taming sibling squabbles, and doing all the work around the house. In an age of overly involved parents, Vicki Hoefle offers a battle cry of sanity. I read her book in one weekend, immediately put her wisdom to use, and saw results right away. I was stunned. If you want to change the dynamic in your household and nurture self-reliant, thoughtful, and resilient children, read this book.”  (Katherine Ozment, contributing editor and weekly columnist for Boston Magazine)


"Vicki Hoefle does an amazing job in Duct Tape Parenting of providing relatable, helpful advice. Her approach is unique and extremely thought provoking. This is a must-read for parents who are tired of advice that does not work and need a re-charge for their families." (Vanessa Van Petten, author, RadicalParenting.com)


“In this gem of a book, Vicki Hoefle gives parents a commonsense approach to raising respectful, responsible and resilient children. Her lighthearted, down to earth manner helps parents clarify their goals for their families, understand the roots of behavior and develop a path to creating a happy, healthy and supportive family life.” (Amy Lew, PhD, author of Raising Kids Who Can)

“The most important family dynamic that we have achieved as a result of Vicki Hoefle’s approach is one of mutual respect. We feel like a team, like four people who can depend upon each other. This book is a must-read for any family who is looking to create a supportive unit built on honesty and trust.” (Katy Smith Abbott, Dean of Students & Assistant Professor of the History of Art and Architecture, Middlebury College)

“An informative and irreverent guide, this book is a must-read for anyone who wants to raise resilient, problem-solving children.  Vicki Hoefle offers a Goldilocks way forward: not too much parenting, not too little, just right.”  (Craig Idlebrook, writer and parent-educator with the Boot Camp for New Dads Project. www.bootcampfordads.org)


“If you are interested in more positive family relationships and raising capable children who will courageously step into adulthood, take the opportunity to read this book. It is never too late to change your life.”  (Cindy Pierce, mother, innkeeper, comic, author of Finding the Doorbell, Sexual Satisfaction for the Long Haul)


“This is a must-read for every parent, parent educator, and teacher. The exercises help you identify the problem and the little reminders tell you exactly what to do (‘putting on the duct tape’), when to do, and why to do. As a counselor and educator, I recommend this book wholeheartedly to every parent and any individual who works with children. The ideas are so applicable, that I will use some of them in my classes, even at the graduate level! And as a parent my duct tape is ready…finally.” (Bengu Erguner-Tekinalp, PhD, assistant professor, Counselor Education, Drake University)


Rarely does a book come along that offers parents solid information about why a parenting style is so important, tools and tips that make it easy to try, and inspiration that keeps us afloat as we find our way. Vicki Hoefle is the real deal. She’s parented five kids and taught thousands of parents with this approach. This book should definitely be on the top of your stack!” (Dina Emser, Certified Positive Discipline Lead Trainer, author of Roadmap to Success and Trusting the Fortune Within)


"Hoefle's straightforward approach to empowering our children debunks the parenting myths that often cause unnecessary stressors that are all too common within families. Her techniques and highly identifiable case studies demonstrate that it is possible for parents to have mutually respectful relationships with their children, while lovingly engaging with them and providing the knowledge that builds their abilities, confidence and independence." (Dawn Lyons, freelance writer & editor, teen consultant & advocate, www.linesbylyons.com)



"Parenting books are like diet books: They work for a while and then you're back to blimpdom. Duct Tape Parenting seems like something else - an idea that's workable for the long run, because, at base, it believes in the kids themselves." (Lenore Skenazy, founder of the book and blog, Free-Range Kids)

"[Hoefle’s] conjuncture that a misbehaving child is a discouraged child carries the weight of truth. By letting kids work out their own kinks, parents will have more time in the long run to enjoy their children and the parenting journey." – Library Journal, August 2013

More About the Author

Vicki is a professional parent educator and mother of five, living in Middlebury, Vermont.

Vicki Hoefle began teaching more than 20 years ago, while running a daycare center in Seattle, WA. Parents consistently praised her approach with their children, and wanted to bring her tools and understanding of children home. From this need, Vicki created a six-week parenting class. Two decades and thousands of success stories later, Vicki continues to share her parenting tips and techniques with families across the country. She combines expertise in Adlerian Psychology with a suite of actionable, time-tested tools. Her informative and highly engaging presentation style keeps her in demand as a speaker, facilitator and educator.

Raising children is perhaps the most complex, challenging task parents will ever face--and, with the right guidance, the most rewarding. While it's true that parenting often relies on instinct, there are techniques that can help every parent, parent from their best. For the past 20 years, Vicki has developed and promoted successful strategies and approaches that help create healthy, lasting and productive relationships with children.

Professional Highlights

Member of NASAP, North American Society of Adlerian Psychology
Member of ICF, International Coaching Federation
Strategic Partner to the Adler International Learning
Completed ICASSI training at Wheaton College
Workshop presenter at the Florida Adlerian Society Conference

Current Spotlights:

Founder of Parenting On Track™ Home & Educator Programs
Keynote speaker and parenting expert
Parent and Family Communication Coach
Alltop-listed blogger

Parenting On Track™ is a proactive, sustainable parenting strategy based on Adlerian Psychology. From eliminating "useless" behaviors such as whining and power struggles, to showing children that they are capable and important members of the family, the Parenting On Track™ program provides parents with tools to create a respectful and peaceful family life. The program was recently awarded "Seals of Approval" from both PTPA (Parent Tested, Parent Approved) Media Inc., and from The Baby Planners.

Customer Reviews

If you are a parent, thinking of becoming a parent, work with kids or even just spend time with kids-get this book!
Finally she has put in book form all the strategies that parents in her classes have learned really work to raise respectful, responsible, and resilient kids.
School counselor
This book has a down to earth, and common sense approach to parenting but it is presented in a TOTALLY new and unique way.
A. Pintair

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Jennifer on August 11, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The theories, practices and strategies taught in Duct Tape Parenting and the Parenting on Track program are the most sensible, eye-opening, heart-opening, family-building I ever received as a parent. In fact, I wish I had access to Vicki's insights and advice about two years PRIOR to having kids because, as logical as it all is, it takes time for us "old dogs" to learn new tricks -- which usually means UN-learning parenting ideas and behavior we "inherited" from our parents. But alas, it's never too late -- my kids were 6 and 8 when I was first exposed to Parenting on Track and the more they responded to being acknowledged and trusted (rather than nagged and parent-steered) the easier it became for me to keep my mouth shut (not that I'm successful all the time, by any means!)

Adlerian psychology forms the basis of this parenting approach and the two key pieces as it relates to parenting that I try to hold on to on a daily basis are:
1. Never do for a child what they can do for themselves
2. As a parent, my role is to teach and train my children and to not pass judgement as they figure things out in their own unique way.

Much easier said than done, but throughout the book Vicki explains (with a lot of wit) the psychological basis and, more importantly, practical strategies to enable these things to happen. It is these strategies-- from family meeting, to "road maps to success," to giving allowance, to problem boards, to rights and responsibilities -- that are the heart and soul of the approach. Some are easier to implement than others (I've found) and Vicki will say each needs to be adapted to the specific dynamic of the family. But it is clear how each one holds vast potential for the positive effect it can have on every family member.

I will continue to use and be thankful for Vicki's strategies as I raise my own family, and I will give this book as a gift to EVERY new parent I know.
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24 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Flockmother on August 18, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'm camped out in a shopping mall right now with my copy of Duct Tape Parenting and I'm so glad because my 10-year-old just ran up to me and cried, "I lost my wallet! I had it under my arm and now it's gone!"

Instead of pouring salt in the wound with a "How could you...?/Why didn't you...?" lecture, I was able to just listen and recognize the situation for what it is: an invaluable mistake that she will never forget. Like the book says, "Mistakes are arguably the easiest and most efficient way for kids to learn to cooperate, take personal responsibility, practice time management, develop organizational skills, become resilient, and develop the mental muscle that will come in handy as their lives become more challenging and difficult in the years to come."

I know she had her whole savings in that wallet. And I know she'll be a lot more careful with it next time without one word about it from me. Now, back to reading...
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Frecklequeen on October 23, 2012
Format: Paperback
I have 3 children: 9, 7 and 4. My husband and I had NO IDEA how heavily we were controlling our children through nagging and micro-managing. After learning Vicki's strategies, we realized that we were not setting our children up to own their own lives, to be happy & confident with who they are, and to have a long-lasting & loving relationship with us. It was tough to realize we had been way off track as parents. But Vicki's lessons are so easy to understand and simple to implement, and you can immediately make a difference, and regain the relationship you want with your children and the strategies you want to help train them to be empowered & caring individuals.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Rebecca Auclair on September 28, 2012
Format: Paperback
The way that Vicki loves and respects children and their parents is so obvious in her well-written, well thought-out book. She brings care and passion about our humanity to her writing and teaching with an urgency and directness that is timely and important. I can't tell you how many times, when I'm observing other people's children (my own children are perfect, well-trained angels, of course. HAHAHA!) that I see them doing small things that really add up into bigger problems-- not greeting adults, dropping their backpacks for the adult to carry, and/or making some loud, unrealistic demand. It is a real humdinger when a child does all of those things in under a minute! Sheesh! Vicki's Parenting on Track approach, which she describes clearly in her book, draws our attention to why behaviors like that take root and persist: WE, the parents, ARE THE PROBLEM. She lays out strategies to bring to our relationships with our kids that will help everyone to feel more respected and loved and suggests ways to determine on how each family member is doing and feeling in his or her life. She reminds us that if we, as parents, are exasperated and discouraged, our children are too and supports us in fixing ourselves in order to make room for our children to grow. "FEED THE FLOWER, STARVE THE WEED!" is one of her wonderful take home messages and one I go back to over and over with my own kids. At first, it may feel awkward and confusing to everyone to adapt these strategies. I found myself thinking, "Really....? Really, I'm going to say nothing about that incredibly annoying thing that my child just did? I'm going to do that for a week? Okay...." Really. Really, really, really.Read more ›
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