Cliques: Eight Steps to Help Your Child Survive the Social Jungle

Charlene C. Giannetti, Author, Margaret Sagarese, Author Broadway Books $14 (256p) ISBN 978-0-7679-0653-1
The authors of The Roller Coaster Years, which PW named one of the Best Books of 1997, and Parenting 911 examine the subtle but powerful influence that peer pressure, most notably in the form of cliques, can have on children, generally starting during the middle school years (when kids are between the ages of 10 and 15), and offer parents effective aids to helping their kids--whether they are bullies, victims or observers--manage the larger world of friendships and associations beyond their family at a time when they are also wrestling with issues of self-identity and self-worth. Among the authors' suggestions are ""help your child develop... an objective view of cliques"" and ""help your child control emotions,"" but, they caution, there are certain things, such as ""prevent[ing] others from judging your child,"" that are beyond parents' scope of control or influence. ""Cliques deal in social power,"" aver Giannetti and Sagarese, and even those kids who are considered popular suffer from insecurities about whether or not they'll continue to fit in. In fact, Giannetti and Sagarese have found that kids in ""middle friendship circles"" (the clique into which most kids fall), who are neither competing for popularity nor are antisocial loners, are usually the happiest. Once again, Giannetti and Sagarese deliver a positive, proactive book for parents that offers cogent (often anecdotal) examples of particular problems that occur with social interaction among middle schoolers and presents effective strategies for handling them. Cliques can be a serious problem, but keeping things in perspective is helpful all the way around. Agent, Denise Marcil. (Feb. 6)
Reviewed on: 02/05/2001
Release date: 02/01/2001
Open Ebook - 121 pages - 978-0-7679-0935-8
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