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How to parent smarter not harder.

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My 2021 top picks for thought-provoking books

*This post contains affiliate links I get sent a lot of books by publishers to review but I don’t always get a chance to put them on the blog. I enjoy reading (when I find the time!), so I also...

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Gender inclusive books for tweens and teens

*This post contains affiliate links It is so important that children and teens read books that include a diverse array of characters – so that they can find themselves and their own thoughts...

Photo of smiling mum and child to illustrate article on how parents' self-esteem affects children

How parents’ self-esteem affects children

Self-esteem naturally ebbs and flows throughout life. Many parents find that their self-esteem takes a dive when they have young children, for example. Children make huge demands on our time and that...

Photo of teenager looking thoughtful to illustrate article on the reality of being a teenage girl today

The reality of being a teenage girl today

As a parent, it is easy to make assumptions about today’s teenagers and their lives. However, the pressures faced by teens – and especially by teenage girls – are intense and what...

woman dancing to illustrate article on wellbeing snacks by parenting expert Anita Cleare

Wellbeing snacks: the answer to parental burnout?

Spoiler alert: wellbeing snacks are nothing to do with food. There are no pastries or packets of crisps in this article. And I won’t be giving you permission to eat chocolate (unless it’s...

photo of woman at her desk with her head in her hands to illustrate article on The Efficiency Trap by Anita Cleare

The efficiency trap

In my book, The Work/Parent Switch, I talk about the problem of ‘efficiency thinking’. The efficiency mindset is a task-oriented approach to time that is incredibly useful for getting...

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Back-to-school Parenting Resolutions

The start of the school year is a time of new beginnings for families. It’s the perfect time to think of some resolutions for the coming academic year. Perhaps you want to make more time for...

Teaching boys about consent

Like many parents, I was shocked by recent revelations about sexual violence and harassment in UK schools. The tragic killing of Sarah Everard opened the floodgates for women to talk about not...

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Top 10 books for teaching children about sex

*This post contains affiliate links Talking to children about bodies and bits and how they fit together isn’t always easy. The earlier you start and the more relaxed you are about it, the...

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The role of touch in child development

There are lots of concerns about the impacts of social distancing on children’s development. Parents are reporting their children have become more germ phobic as a result of Covid anxieties....

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Positive parenting tips for a harmonious family holiday

Family holidays are great. They are the stuff that memories are made of – full of relaxed time and laughter, the true essence and point of childhood. Well, that’s the theory, anyway! In...

photo pf a girl on a bike in the summer in article on positive parenting by parenting expert Anita Cleare

A positive parenting toolkit for the school holidays

The school holidays are upon us and I know how busy you are. So, I thought I’d help you save time on your holiday prep and bring together in one place all the positive parenting strategies...

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How to boost your child’s communication & thinking skills in just 5 minutes

Guest post by Kavin Wadhar Are you the parent of a 6-12 year old? Are you concerned about the impacts of Covid on their social and communication skills? Do you find your busy workload gets in the way...

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Parents, cut yourselves some slack this summer

My intention was to write a blog post full of exciting things to do this summer that would help your children catch up lost ground after a year of lockdowns and remote learning. But, to be honest, I...

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Play ideas for busy parents

*This post contains affiliate links Let’s face it, the pandemic has been more than a little challenging for working parents with young children. What with homeschooling and lockdowns and...

How to get a teenager out of their bedroom

A few years ago, I wrote a series of posts on family activities for teenagers. The emphasis was on exciting, physically active, low tech ideas – including suggestions for winter, spring and...

photo of angry teens back to bak to illustrate article on teenage bickering by parenting expert Anita Cleare

Teenage bickering – what’s normal?

So, here’s a question for you. What’s normal when it comes to teenage bickering? That’s the kind of question I get asked all the time. But the reality is that ‘normal’...

Photo of baby to illustrate podcast on introducing a new baby to your family by parenting expert Anita Cleare

Introducing a new baby to your family

I am frequently asked for advice on the best tactics for introducing a new baby. Many parents worry about how they will cope with the added demands of a new baby and how a sibling’s arrival...

photo of teenager eating chocolate to illustrate article by parenting expert Anita Cleare on talking to a teenager about healthy eating without giving them body image anxiety

Talking to a teenager about healthy eating (without giving them a complex)

During lockdown, lots of parents raised concerns with me about how to encourage teens to follow a more healthy lifestyle. Parents reported teenagers doing very little exercise, eating a lot of junk...

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101 ideas for supporting your child’s development

We all want our children to do well – at school and in life – and to reach their full potential. But battling over homework and bribing them to complete extra maths booklets isn’t...

20 Exercise Ideas for Tweens (8-11yrs)

If you are worried that your child’s physical fitness levels plummeted during lockdown, you are not alone. Lots of parents report struggling to keep children physically active when so many...

a photo of book covers to illustrate article on a list of useful books to help kids recover from lockdown

Books to help kids recover from lockdown

Regular readers will know that I advocate snuggling up with a story as a brilliant way to raise sensitive issues with children indirectly and engage them in thinking about ideas. So you won’t...

photo of child coming down a slide to illustrate blog post by parenting expert Anita Cleare on how 'moments to shine' help build children's self-esteem

How ‘moments to shine’ build children’s self-esteem

Experiencing ‘moments to shine’ is really important for building children’s self-esteem. Here’s what those moments look like and how parents can make them happen every day:...

Photo of child to illustrate blog post by parenting expert Anita Cleare on 'Helping children get back on track post-lockdown'

Helping children get back on track post-lockdown

With glimmers of hope that the national lockdown in the UK is to be gradually lifted, parents and professionals are turning our thoughts to helping children get back on track post-lockdown....

Photo of girl outside school gates to illustrate blog post by parenting expert Anita Cleare "Is my child worried about going back to school?"

Is my child worried about going back to school?

In September 2020, after the long period of school closures in the UK, I recorded a couple of quick videos to help parents settle young children back into school. Often children don’t tell us...

Creating a mentally healthy family life

Mental ill health can strike anyone. At any time of life. But, just as with physical health, there are simple things we can all do to boost our mental and emotional wellbeing. There is lots of...

Empathetic listening video guide for parents by parenting expert Anita Cleare, photo of teenager carrying a surf board

Empathetic Listening

Empathetic listening is a really important skill for parents to learn in order to support children’s emotional well-being. Here’s a 3-minute video tip on how to do it.   If you have...

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What children need most from their parents

Even before Covid-19, many working parents were already conflicted about what children need most from us, and how to prioritise between work and family. We are a generation of parents who are working...

Best books to teach children social skills: phot of 'I'll Wait, Mr Panda book cover

Best books to teach children social skills (2-7yrs)

*This post contains affiliate links The absolute best way for children to learn social skills is through practice. Young children needs lots of opportunities to play with other kids – older,...

photo of child playing on phone to illustrate blog by parenting expert Anita Cleare on How much tech time is too much tech time?

How much tech time is too much tech time?

“How much tech time is too much tech time?” is one of the questions I am most frequently asked by parents. The potential impacts of excessive screen time has been a big concern for...