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How To Handle Difficult Parents: A Teacher's Survival Guide Paperback – 2006

4.7 out of 5 stars 30 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

A handy guide with a sense of humor that'll keep the parent woes at bay.

--Edutopia

Amazon.com Review

Dispenses practical advice on resolving parent-teacher conflicts with a light-hearted but informed tone...A good selection for new teachers especially.

--Education Week
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Cottonwood Press; 1st edition (2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1877673722
  • ISBN-13: 978-1877673726
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 0.4 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #230,790 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By James Hiller VINE VOICE on May 20, 2007
Format: Paperback
Let's face it. As a teacher with any amount of experience, we've all had them. Not the kids. The parents. Those parents who subtlety work to subterfuge any attempt to move forward with your class. The parent who insists that their child never lies. The parent who believes you and you alone are singling out their child, which is the true cause of their misbehavior. Sound familiar? Good.

As as teacher, we've all been there before. The question always remains, what to do in those situations? Obviously, being completely honest with the parent is never really an option, and subtlety is most often missed by a parent with an agenda. That's where this new book comes in, "How to Handle Difficult Parents: A Teacher's Survival Guide" by Suzanne Capek Tingley.

Both knee slapping funny and filled cover to cover with insightful tips, "How to Handle Difficult Parents" should be a must-read for any teacher, both new and experienced. Tingley, an experienced teacher, principal and administrator herself, approaches these situations similarly. First, she introduces each difficult parent "type" by setting up scenarios that teachers may very easily find themselves in. Through ingenious use of a dialogue, you are suddenly placed in the situation, some of which I have had happen to me in my sixteen years in education. Then, Tingley offers specific suggestions and tips for teachers to follow. Infused with all of this, Tingley practical approach and great sense of humor make reading this book not only informative, but a delight.

For example, Tingley takes on the "Caped Crusader" parent: the one that works to make sure their thoughts and ideas are followed by everyone else. This parent often has issues with curriculum and the choices teachers make.
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By Danamite on January 13, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this book after a very frustrating week of hateful parents and mean administrators. The author writes what all teachers want to say, but then suggests the "politically correct" way to approach the situation. Great book for the first year teacher!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I liked the humor added to this book. It was an easy read with great ideas and actual examples. I would recommend this book for any new or veteran teacher. I was going to loan this book to friends but decided to keep it because I want to be able to refer back to this book as needed. :)
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Format: Paperback
As a veteran teacher-librarian, I can say that I have probably met most of the types of parents that Suzanne Tingley highlights in her book. As a parent, I can say that I may have had tendencies toward a few of the actions described. What is remarkable about this book is the down to earth advice for teachers, young and old, in how to diffuse and handle situations that will most definitely occur in the school setting at one time or another. The different scenarios illustrated by the presence of Caped Crusaders, Helicopter Moms, or Uncivil Libertarians are ones in which we have all had a part. Mrs. Tingley has clearly thought about how differently those scenarios could be played out so that a teacher can maintain his or her principles while allowing the parent to retain his or her dignity as the problem is resolved. She does this with humor, but also with a great deal of insight and intelligence. In order for schools to be effective in educating students, teachers and parents must communicate reasonably and civily with each other. This book opens the door to such communication. I am glad the book was recommended to me and I recommend it to all teachers who seek well-reasoned advice or reinforcement in validating responses to difficult situations and parents.
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Format: Paperback
Tingley gives an excellent overview of how educational objectives have evolved from instilling self-esteem to achieving high scores on standardized tests and what a problem that has created in dealing with today's parents. She acknowledges the frustrations teachers feel and frequently complain about, then skillfully uses humor along with sound advice to get beyond the griping and deal with the problems unreasonable parents can present. The book would be very helpful as a basis for role playing sessions for teachers-in-training in order to master the skills of being in control, getting parents on their side and most importantly, handling themselves as professionals. Even veteran teachers could benefit from reflecting on the amusing, yet accurate parent stereotypes Tingley has captured through her years of experience.
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Format: Paperback
This book provides invaluable insight and advice for new and veteran teachers, administrators and parents. Through the light-hearted examples of some stereotypical parents, opportunities are presented to facilitate the lines of communication between home and school. Each year we lose many potentially outstanding teachers from the stress and demands of today's more transparent educational system. Reading, discussing, and implementing the practical advice from this book will help retain many of these promising professionals. I would highly recommend this book as a must read for any school's new teacher mentoring program. As a parent, I would also recommend reading the book to gain a better understanding of the educator's perspective and how one can work in harmony for the sake of the child.
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