Michael Grose, Dip.T., B.Ed., M.Ed.St. is one of Australia’s most popular writers and speakers on parenting and family matters. He is a former teacher who for fifteen years spent five hours of every working day surrounded by kids. Currently he coaches parents all over Australia to be more effective family leaders.
This hands-on experience together with his work with families and parents over the last fifteen years has enabled Michael to become one of Australia’s most popular parenting educators.
He is –
- The author of 6 books, including the highly acclaimed One Step Ahead, which has been released in the United Kingdom, Ireland and South Africa.
- The author of over 300 columns in newspapers and magazines across Australia
- The presenter of keynotes and seminars in the education, community and corporate sectors
- The creator of a range of high quality parenting resources that are in at least 50 per cent of Australian schools.
- The first person to conduct a parenting seminar in Parliament House Canberra, in May 2004.
Interview with Michael Grose
What attracted you to a teaching career and how did your current role as a parenting expert emerge from that teaching background of 15 years?
I went into teaching by design and the parenting field by accident. I underwent post-graduate study to assist my teaching and did a lot of research about parenting for my course. I conducted many parenting program as part of the course too. I turned my research into a book, which sold well and bingo a new career was born.
What do you find are the common issues that Australian parents voice in relation to parenting?
Sibling fighting, behaviour management and working with their partner amicably are big issues currently for Australian parents. Lack of confidence is a problem. Research shows that mothers want ideas regarding behaviour management and promoting confidence while dads want ideas to help them understand relate to kids.
From your work with children, what do you find that children want from their parents who work and do not work?
Children don't mind if their parents work however they do mind if it interferes with their lifestyles.
They don't want mum to come home tired nor dad to come home with a bad mood.
Parents being there for their important milestones is also a big issue for them.
What do you regard as being 4 essential skills that parents should possess for effective parenting?
1. The ability to encourage
2. Good assertive behaviour management
3. Being able to speak to kids in a way that children will listen
4. The ability to distance yourself from your child and have a life of your own outside theirs.
How can schools work with parents to help children with behaviour management and develop leadership potential?
It would help if parents weren't so defensive about their children and also less protective.
One of your online courses is about creating a boy-friendly school, can you explain this issue is significant?
Boy-friendly schools have teachers who like and appreciate boys. They use a variety of learning activities that cater for all learning styles. They have a physical environment that caters for boys' needs. They focus on literacy in the early years too. Not all schools are boy-friendly in these ways.
What type of support would you like to see available for parents or carers in their role of parenting?
More counselling, education and help needs to be given to parents of children from 2-4 year old and 11-14 year old. Both problematic times where parents are often stuck.
What are your thoughts about children being raised in single parent families?
It is hard work as single parents need to be both mother and father and there is no break. It can work well as long as both parents (if alive) put aside their difficulties and work together for the good of the children. It does happen.
How do you juggle work and family life?
By being home when I am home and never bringing work home in my head or physically. By working with my wife to understand the rhythms of busy and slack periods. I have a relaxed/me state of mind when I travel so I take in the sights when I am away. I have the luxury of not having to worry about my kids as my wife is home doing that!