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In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review

What makes a great parent?

By Rabbi Binyomin Ginsberg


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Over the past few days I have been asked the following questions:


  • How do I get my child to stop hitting other children?

  • What should I do to stop my child from using inappropriate language?

  • How do I convince my child that he has joined the wrong crowd?

  • How do I get my children to listen to me the first time I tell them something?

  • How do I deal with my child who is taking things that don't belong to him?

All the questions above share one thing in common: they address after-the-fact situations. The parents were looking for answers on how to deal with problems that had already occurred. It is rare for a parent to question how to do something to prevent a problem from happening in the first place.

As I thought about why parents were not dealing proactively to prevent these situations, I reflected on this noteworthy title, parent. If you don't agree the title is that special, contemplate the title we use for Abraham, Isaac, Jacob: Avinu, our Father. And Sarah, Rebecca, Rachel, and Leah: Imeinu, our Mother.

Before entering any profession, it is a foregone conclusion that some form of training is necessary. We must study the profession and its demands, learn the skills required, and understand the rules and exceptions. The more complicated the profession, the more intense the training … but with parenting, the most demanding occupation, we are shoved into the deep end of the pool, without first learning how to swim.

The message in this article is not to take parenting classes before becoming a parent. We must also understand why parenting needs to be learned.

If the title of this article grabbed your attention, I will share the one consistent ingredient that makes a great parent. In formulating a list of parents I regard as great parents, I noticed an interesting trend. Each and every one was a proactive, thinking parent.

I chuckle when I am introduced as a parenting expert. I don't have greater wisdom than any other parent. However, the one thing that may qualify me as an expert is the amount of time I think about parenting issues, not only on how to deal with an existing problem.

Rather, the thinking is one of prevention. Our grandparents did not have the conveniences and luxuries that we enjoy today, but many took the time to stop and think about the chinuch (educational/character development) of their children preventively and proactively.

As busy as my father was, I recall his frequent visits to my yeshivah to see how I was doing.

We must ask ourselves some serious questions. Do we take an interest in our children only after we have received a call from the teacher that there is a problem? Do we stop ourselves often enough and ask if there is anything we can do to make things better for our children?

A great parent is one who asks the proactive and preventive questions and acts upon them.

We know that we are not to make major purchases for a child before the child is born. However, soon after the birth, we outfit the child's room and wardrobe with the best and nicest we can afford. Do we use the same approach in the way we raise our children? As the child reaches each stage of life, do we proactively plan for the next stage?

Let us use one example to illustrate and strengthen the point. We will address the universal parenting issue of attending parent-teacher night. Yes, it's inconvenient to stop what we are doing and take the time to go to PTA, but it is undeniably vital to show our children that we think of and care about them. Let's assume that two boys in the same class bring home a note that PTA will be held in the following week. One boy is doing well academically and has no obvious social issues; the other is a below-average student who sometimes (or more than sometimes) acts out in class and is "the class clown," whose teacher has already contacted the parents several times during the school year. Which boy's parents will go to the meeting and for which boy is it important that his parents attend?

Every teacher knows that it is more likely that the first boy's parents will attend, to be met with the laughing greeting, "So, you came for your nachas (familial pride) report?" And, while the second boy's parents should surely attend to discuss their child's academic and social issues, the answer to the second question may surprise you: it is vital for both of these boys that their parents attend! True, the problem student needs parental guidance and intervention, but the student who is doing well also must see that his parents think he is important enough for them to go to PTA and talk personally with his teacher.

For each child, the knowledge that his parents are interested enough to take time out for him will boost his confidence in his own value to them. This feeling is priceless and there is a far greater probability that the child will wish to emulate his parents' values and behavior.

Another way of understanding the importance of proactive parenting is to compare parenting to financial investing. Which of the following would we consider a healthy investor? Is it the one who researches various companies impulsively to invest and reaches a thought-out decision or is it the one who impulsively sells his shares when informed that there is a problem with his portfolio? It is obviously the first one, and the same applies to parenting: advanced thinking is the key.

Raising children effectively is a multifaceted undertaking and a major responsibility. Even a parent who has succeeded with the first child may need a different set of rules and a different approach for each succeeding child in order to meet the child's individual needs. We must do all we can to ensure our child's success, relative to that child's abilities and interest. Being a great parent is a lifelong pursuit that requires heartfelt prayer. We must pray for Divine assistance and plead with the Master of the Universe to guide our children to make the right choices. May our prayers to raise fine children be answered!


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