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Teaching Kids to Be Good People: Progressive Parenting for the 21st Century [Kindle Edition]

Annie Fox
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)

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Book Description

“Not all teachers are parents, but all parents are teachers. When we teach kids to be good people who possess the social courage to do the right thing, we help to make the world a safer, saner, more accepting place for all of us.” —Annie Fox, M.Ed.

We live in a time shaped by a viral culture of cruelty. Now and in the future, we desperately need more good people. But where will these young people come from? From the homes of parents with a game plan! In Teaching Kids to Be Good People, Annie Fox has written a very personal, step-by-step guide to teaching your children to make healthy choices (online and off). Because being good is not enough. We have to do good.

This very pragmatic and funny guide includes essays, podcasts, prompts, tools, questions, answers, and self-assessment quizzes, all for the purpose of teaching kids to be good people. Hopefully, you’ll become so engaged in this process that you will inspire your children to do the right thing when no one's watching, and when everyone is watching.

“Stellar! Unlike many solution-based parenting books, Teaching Kids to Be Good People is insightful, intuitive on so many levels… a truly meaningful book for our times.” —Lynne Kenney, Psy.D., author of “The Family Coach Method”

“[G]reat advice on how exactly we can help our kids with their most important skill set—the social-emotional one.” —Rick Ackerly, author of “The Genius in Every Child”

“Annie Fox has a genuine passion for helping our young people and she has many years of experience doing it. Both are evident in this wonderful resource for parents and teachers.” —Dr. Hal Urban, Ed.D., author of “Life’s Greatest Lessons”

“Every time I read something of Annie’s, it makes me think… you can’t help but love all that she does. Great book!” —Sarah Newton, author of “Help! My Teenager Is an Alien!”

“I wholeheartedly recommend ‘Teaching Kids to be Good People’ to any significant adult in children's lives. This book offers guidance and practical advice to ensure that children are supported to become the best that they can be.  The best not only for themselves but the best also for their families, schools, communities and the world!” —Sue McNamara, Director of Education, Six Seconds South East Asia

“Timing is everything, and the time has come for this book! Teaching Kids to Be Good People not only helps parents introduce and support their children’s emotions, it also reminds adults that we too must honor and release our deeply held feelings as well. The time has come!” —Sharon Silver, CPE, author of “Stop Reacting and Start Responding”

“Annie has been helping teens use their moral compass and parents and educators to support young people’s development of one for 30 years, and her very readable latest book has that level of experience, plus wisdom, anecdotes, exercises, and compass-development tools, packed into it. I highly recommend this book. In it, Annie connects 21st-century parenting to the wisdom of the ages.” —Anne Collier, journalist, youth advocate and co-director of

“Raising happy, confident, emotionally intelligent, compassionate kids is not always easy in these 24/7 digitally online times. Finding positive, empathetic role models is often difficult, but ‘Teaching Kids to Be Good People,’ a wonderfully practical and warm-hearted book, is a great place to start. It will empower parents with some really helpful suggestions and ideas for navigating the choppy emotional waters of raising great adults. I highly recommend that you settle down with a cup of coffee and enjoy reading ’Teaching Kids‘ as Annie’s ideas will make communicating with your children meaningful and magical.” —Sue Atkins, author of “Parenting Made Easy—How to Raise Happy Children”

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Visit Annie at her website, AnnieFox.comFollow Annie on Twitter: @Annie_FoxFollow Annie on Facebook:

Product Details

  • File Size: 523 KB
  • Print Length: 271 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1480083933
  • Publisher: Electric Eggplant (November 24, 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B009P5JEZS
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #567,745 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Clear Path for Kind Parenting October 22, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I read this book when it was available for free download and since have given gift certificates through Amazon for friends to read. I love the blend of stories from the author's life and clear, easy to follow ideas for implementing communication and modeling good behavior.
It's familiar for me to give commands to kids, yet I would bristle if kids spoke to me in the same manner. "Please wash the dishes." is just as easy as a command.
The idea of a family meeting where a parent really listens is not a new concept to me, yet I tend to jump in to problem solve when listening actively would accomplish the goal. This book gave me a path and left me feeling as if I could be a better parent and in doing that, show the kids in my life how to be better people.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An absolutely essential resource October 25, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
Annie's anecdotes and insights, her warmth and wisdom, together with Real-World Assignments and Conversations That Count, have created a book that is both passionate and practical. Annie offers parents and teachers an important guide for understanding teens - in general and in the 21st century. What a gift!
Rae Pica, Education Consultant, Author, & Radio Host
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Parent Educator Loves This Book and the author! April 3, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Hello from Montana,

I really enjoyed reading this book and have already loaned it to my daughter. Annie makes me feel as if we are having a good conversation and swapping stories about how to help strengthen families and give parents tools.

Parents frequently tell me that they need to words to say in family situations. If parents were not parented how can they know what is "normal ages and stages" and what needs to be addressed with a firm voice?

Her writing paints a picture in my mind and I found myself smiling as I read. Wanted to shout "Yep, been there and done that and lived to laugh about it."

You will enjoy the various ways she gets the message of respectful communication across to parents, teachers and other caring adults.

Judy Helm Wright, author, speaker and Global Director of the Solutions for Families Program for the WIN.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars If I can teach my child this we will all be happy January 30, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book sat on my Kindle for a few weeks before I got around to reading it. Don't make the same mistake. Download it and read it NOW. But read it with a pen in hand or finger on the hi-lighter button! There were so many gems in this book. Original stuff coupled with action plans of how to incorporate it into your life. Even wording of what to say to your child. I'm memorizing many of them. So why only four stars? The 'What would you do section' drove me nuts. There was the question but you had to click to get the answer and then I lost my place. Petty really but then again if everyone gives this books five stars you might think we are paid to review this book and that would be a shame as this book can change the future of our most precious asset - our children!

Just one of my favourite quotes ... "Not even the hottest hate gives us a free pass to hurt anyone. That's why teaching kids to be good people, involves helping them to understand emotions so they can learn to diffuse their own incendiary devices before losing control and hurting someone."

"Pretending that what's going on around us is OK when it isn't, rarely leads to good choices. Neither does keeping our goodness locked inside because we're worried that our kindness will be mocked." (83 percent admitted that "sometimes, always, or almost always" they pretend things are OK when they aren't.) And the script Annie provides to tell your child about faking it is priceless.

The broken windows theory made so much sense. I found myself lost in her stories but always coming out at the end with incredible learning, especially the story about tossing your candy wrapper on the floor.

The Family Climate Questionnaire is currently printing and will be the focus of our next family meeting.

Loved her take on US vs. THEM. There is only US. Imagine if every parent read this book?
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stellar! October 19, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
"Stellar! Unlike many solution-based parenting books, Teaching Kids to Be Good People is insightful, intuitive on so many levels... a truly meaningful book for our times. In an era when we feel confused about how to stay connected with our teens, Annie gives us practical, new advice we can use right now! The stories are so well written, you won't want to get up, so grab a cup of Joe in a comfy chair and turn off your phone. This book is going to change your relationships!"
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars GREAT little book! May 22, 2013
By Dr. Par
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
All my kids are grown and so are most of my 14 grand kids, but as a pediatrician I found this book to be an excellent source for hands on "how to" advice!

Ann's underlying premise is: Not all teachers are parents, but all parents are teachers! I couldn't agree more, and I would add that: All parents are their kids BEST teachers. Unfortunately not all parents believe that, but they will when they finish this little, easy to read, book.

I liked what she had to say about peer pressure by calling it "peer approval". We all seek approval from our peers, and many times we do "what's needed" to get that approval. That's OK, Ann says as long as it is the right thing, the thing we want to do, or is of neutral moral or social value. In my new book, for release this fall, "Tools for Effective Parenting", I call peer pressure - peer permission, which is in line with her thinking. Effective parenting, (the act, not my book) Ann says is "parenting which helps kids develop a code of ethics." And that code, must include integrity!

She has a great approach to bullying and "the village" parent concept. Bullying includes hard things like "online" and even "Credit card buying". Read it you'll love it, and it will help you as well as your children!

Two other things I really like: If you need something from your kids, or anyone, don't ask, TELL. I have heard so many parents ask their kids if they "Want to go home, or want to go to bed, or eat their dinner, or want to go to the rest room." Kids always say "No" and the parents feel frustrated. Her advice and mine: TELL them, "It's time to go home, to go to bed, or the bathroom." And "You need to do your home work, now!"

I like her "Butt in Campaign"!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars This book has all the maximum possible challenges a parent ...
This book has all the maximum possible challenges a parent of a teenager faces and I am very much impressed by the solutions Annie has provided.
Published 4 months ago by Jessy
5.0 out of 5 stars THE parenting book for have on your shelf for reference!
This is a MUST MUST read for ANY parent!!

The author does a terrific job with this book! It's like she is sitting in the room with you and talking! Read more
Published 8 months ago by Momma Frugal
1.0 out of 5 stars I hate when this happens....NOT ABOUT THE BOOK
I hate to give this only 1 star because it is not a reflection of the book at all. I hate that Amazon does not always make it obvious that you are purchasing a digital form of... Read more
Published 11 months ago by S.M. Dishman
4.0 out of 5 stars great read for parents
This book guides us through the various scenarios a parent may face in dealing with their kids. How to make them loving , caring and compassionate is the key element on this book
Published 12 months ago by Anuj
5.0 out of 5 stars great read!
Very, very helpful! It gave me a little insight and a boost into the mind of my little one! I needed it!
Published 14 months ago by T. Roberts
5.0 out of 5 stars Ever Thought of the Treasure/Wealth You'd Like Your Children to...
This book is a great tool for that.
Money/properties/material wealth
they can help and count for inheritance
but they perish,they can be stolen... Read more
Published 16 months ago by j.g.
5.0 out of 5 stars Good parents can contribute to a better world.
Great ideas in this one that should be things that all parents work on with their children. Not hard to read and understand, but definitely will take serious effort to put into... Read more
Published 16 months ago by scmk
1.0 out of 5 stars Odd
I feel like this was a collection of individual thoughts/stories that don't go together. It's a bit too preachy for me and it didn't seem like the author has children (real life... Read more
Published 18 months ago by avid reader
3.0 out of 5 stars The review history for this product is suspicious
I'd like to order this book based on the reviews but the reviewers seem like they are writing ads and if you check the other reviews they wrote, they are mostly 5 star glowing... Read more
Published 22 months ago by Doug Lifer
5.0 out of 5 stars Investment in the future
Thank you for investing so much of your time in the future generation. I've been working full-time for over 8 yrs. Read more
Published 22 months ago by Shirin Premji
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More About the Author

When Annie Fox's first book "People Are Like Lollipops" (Holiday House) was published, she wasn't old enough to legally sign the contract! By the time she turned 21, though, she decided that helping kids would be her life's work. After graduating from Cornell University with a degree in Human Development and Family Studies then completing her Master's in Education, she began exploring ways to use technology to entertain kids while building their emotional intelligence skills.

In 1977, Annie and her husband David opened Marin Computer Center, the world's first public access microcomputer facility. Her work there led her to write her best selling book, "Armchair BASIC: An Absolute Beginner's Guide to Microcomputers and Programming in BASIC" (Osborn/McGraw-Hill). After a detour into the world of screen writing, Annie returned to computers as an award-winning writer/designer of children's CD-ROMs. (Putt-Putt; Madeline; Get Ready for School, Charlie Brown; and Mr. Potato Head Saves Veggie Valley are just a few of the titles on which she worked.)

At the dawn of the Internet age, Annie dreamed up the idea for The InSite (, a place "for teens and young adults to turn their world around." She is the creator, co-designer, writer, and executive producer of that award-winning site. One of The InSite's most popular features is Hey Terra, a Cyberspace Dear Abby. Annie's first book for teens, "The Teen Survival Guide to Dating & Relating: Real World Advice About Guys, Girls, Growing Up And Getting Along" (2000, 2005 Free Spirit Publishing), is based on hundreds of emails to Terra and Annie's responses to them. "Teen Survival Guide" is now available as a free PDF download from

"Are You My Friend?" a Read-it-to-Me iBook was written by Annie Fox, illustrated by Eli Noyes and produced by Electric Eggplant. This digital story book for 4-8 year olds is the first of the Raymond and Sheila Series and is now available in print form on Amazon, and as Android apps for Kindle Fire, Nook Tablet, and other Android tablets. The second Raymond and Sheila story "Are We Lost?" will be available in print in 2013. See for more info.

Annie's other books include: "Too Stressed to Think? A Teen Guide to Staying Sane When Life Makes You CRAZY," co-authored with Ruth Kirschner (Free Spirit Publishing) and the popular 3 book Middle School Confidential™ series (Free Spirit Publishing). Annie's Middle School Confidential apps (developed by Electric Eggplant) are available for iPad, iPhone, Kindle Fire, Nook Tablet, and other Android tablets (see

Through her conference appearances and public events for kids, tweens, teens, parents, and educators, Annie continues working toward her goal of empowering young people through increased emotional intelligence skills, social courage, and stress-reduction strategies. Her new book for parents and teachers, "Teaching Kids To Be Good People," is now available in print and for Kindle (see

Visit Annie at her website,
Follow Annie on Twitter: @Annie_Fox
Follow Annie on Facebook:


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