Wednesday, September 21st
7:00 - 9:00
Friend Center, Room 006, Princeton Campus
Light refreshments will be provided
Please RSVP below
Reservations will be held at the door
Are Ivy-League parents too pushy? Were you pushed to get where you are today? Amy Chua's book Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother spurred a national debate about (and a lot of animosity toward) "Chinese" parents. But, this discussion (and title) works well for a discussion of Princeton parents - the true Tiger parents.
Guest panelists include Todd W. Kent PhD '83 S83 P11 and Joan Ruddiman EdD P00.
Todd Kent, PhD
Todd Kent is the Associate Director of the Program in Teacher Preparation and is Director of the Teacher Certificate Program. He joined Teacher Prep in 1997 and teaches the program’s introductory course, the Seminar in Student Learning and Methods for Teaching (TPP 301). He supervises student teachers in math, science, and social studies. Todd earned a doctorate in educational evaluation and a master's degree in the social foundations of education from the Curry School of Education at the University of Virginia, and he graduated from Princeton University with an A.B. in economics.
Todd's perspective is that parents have become increasingly intrusive into their children's lives, with probable short term gains in outcomes (do Type A parents help kids get into better colleges -- probably), but possible long-term costs in terms of emotional development (increased stress as children, devastation when they don't get into their top choice school, possible interference in development of autonomy and independent decision making). I'd talk from the perspective as a coach (in terms of parent behavior I observe on the sidelines as a metaphor for the larger issue) and as an educator (I'll talk about working with our own student teachers, where we ask the cooperating teachers to step back and let student teachers make, and learn, from mistakes). A lot of what I would say is anecdotal and observational, but I have a little research that I can introduce from some colleagues at Middlebury on how frequently college students are in touch with parents.
Joan Ruddiman, EdD
Joan Ruddiman is the K-12 gifted and talented specialist for West Windsor Plainsboro School District. She has served as editor of the New Jersey Association for Gifted Children’s Promise and as co-chair of the 2009 state conference. She publishes and presents widely on a variety of literacy and gifted topics, and has been honored as a Governor’s Teacher of the Year, and by the NHD state and national programs. Joan earned an M.Ed. from Rutgers University, and a doctorate in Curriculum and Teaching from Teachers College, Columbia.
Joan will speak to “the competencies,” which come from Partnership for 21st Century Skills. Parents actually thwart the development of “self-directed learner” and “problem solver” by being overly involved. Yet, several studies confirm that parents are the most important influence in their children’s lives. So how to juggle that balance? As a teacher and a parent (and a Type A personality!), I believe parents can help build the skills necessary for their children to be highly competent adults.