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May 2012

Welcome to Leader Online, an e-newsletter for Active Parenting leaders and educators. Here you'll find ideas to make your job a little easier. Are you a "leader in action"? Please share your tips, photos, or success stories by sending a note to our marketing team.

Active Parenting leader in action Soosi Day reflects on cross-cultural parent education in Hong Kong


Certified Active Parenting Trainer Nancy SpenceBy Soosi Day


I retired in 2001 after 33 years in the field of education. Throughout my career, parent education has been a passion for me. I have done thousands of home visits as part of my work over the years and have taught STEP, Listen So Your Child Will Talk, Raising Responsible Children, and now, Active Parenting.


In 2005 I decided I really wasn't ready to retire, so I took a job as a lower primary counselor at Hong Kong International School, where I work with families from all over the world. English is our language of instruction and our curriculum is based on American-style education.

While here I learned about Active Parenting. We decided to shift to Active Parenting when we saw the DVDs and read the workbook for families. Since then we have offered the course four times a year. I have used it with "parents living in privilege" from America, Switzerland, mainland China, Japan, Korea, the Netherlands, France, Australia, New Zealand, and Canada. Although these parents have very different cultural backgrounds, they all share one common interest: wanting to learn more about parenting and their children.

Our groups are typically 8-12 mothers. We offer it at two different times of the day to accommodate working parents. Recently we have been encouraging traveling fathers to register for the Active Parenting online class while their wives take the course!

Talking about the curriculum always includes a necessary discussion about their own family/cultural values and how to bring those two elements of parenting closer together without losing the integrity of their cultures. To make it even more interesting, many of the parents in my classes are in mixed-culture marriages and have moved all over the world in their lifetimes.


I am relocating to the US soon, and my time at Hong Kong International School is coming to a close. I plan to resume teaching Active Parenting in my home community in western Washington state.

For educators working with different cultures, I would like to recommend some other cross-cultural resources that I find compliment my work with Active Parenting. One is John Murphy's book Solution-Focused Counseling in the Schools, and the other is Barbara Schaetti's work with cross-cultural communication (and problem solving). Both espouse strategies that fit well with the training process. Another helpful resource is the Cultural Detective program. It helps people more clearly recognize and problem-solve around various cultural value differences to bridge to common values and outcomes.

Along with her work in schools, Soosi Day is also a mother of one, a stepmother to four, and a grandmother of nine. Three of her grandchildren are blended-culture children.

Add to your skills and expand your influence...it all starts at the Training of Trainers
Learn how to train parenting class leaders at Active Parenting's Training of Trainers, a mixture of fun and learning. Three days of vigorous training will help you expand your professional skills while learning to train new family educators for your organization and community.

The Training of Trainers will be held in Atlanta July 12-14. You can choose from two tracks of learning: Active Parenting or Cooperative Parenting and Divorce. Both tracks provide opportunities to practice your skills, learn from experienced leaders, and network with fellow educators. The venue is close to the city and all of its attractions, so bring your family. Dr. Popkin looks forward to meeting you in Atlanta this summer!


click to preview Family Violence: Impact on Children

Marian's latest pick: family violence awareness videos for parents and educators

Active Parenting has an in-house resource consultant, Marian Adair, who reviews hundreds of books and videos each year. Her goal is to find items to supplement your Active Parenting programming. She reviews each book or video to be sure the content is in keeping with Active Parenting principles. This month, Marian would like to point out a valuable video series:

Family Violence: Impact on Children, a set of 3 DVDs, is a call to action for prevention education. The program examines family violence and its particular impact on children, the members of the family with the least power who often suffer the most harm. The focus of Volume 1 is on caregivers and educators, while Volume 2 targets young parents. Volume 3 provides an understanding of family violence in general and explains the root causes as well as suggesting prevention, response and treatment approaches. Available in both English and Spanish, this series has proven to be among the most popular of the new titles in our catalog this year." Click for more information.

(Do you have a favorite parenting resource to recommend? Send the information to Marian so she can consider it for addition to our catalog: marian@activeparenting.com or fax to 770-429-0334)


Meet Dr. Popkin at the NASAP conference in June
Active Parenting's Dr. Michael Popkin will offer two presentations at the North American Society of Adlerian Psychology annual conference in early June, including "Protecting the Blind Side: How to Empower Children and Teens through Great Parenting Education." The Active Parenting model is heavily based upon the theories of Alfred Adler and Rudolf Dreikurs. Click to learn more about that (in case you've forgotten what you learned in Psych 101 back in college!)


Visit our exhibit at the Stop Girl Bullying conference...also in June
Meet Educational Consultant Michelle Collins and see what's new at our exhibit at the National Conference on Girl Bullying & Other Forms of Relational Aggression conference in late June, here in our hometown of Atlanta. Michelle will have our new Families in Action programs available for your inspection, and if you play your cards right you could go home with a twisty gift!

Employee of the Month

Dr. Popkin and I are two members of a team that works together to serve you. This month I'd like to shine some light on another one of our hidden treasures, Work/Life Coordinator Leigh Hammond-Carrillo. You can see Leigh in Part I of the Online Leader Training Workshop, where she did an Emmy-worthy job in the role of "parent." A native of Atlanta, Leigh is a fan of science fiction and doesn't miss DragonCon each year. Leigh and her husband have a rescue dog named Aladdin, who is a Pharaoh Hound. Currently one of her big projects is the upcoming Active Parenting of Teens online class. "It's going to be great!" she says. We're grateful for her work on this and all the other projects. Thanks, Leigh!

Leigh & Aladdin