A Personal Note From Michelle:
I love using storytelling, data and research, and humor to put stressed-out parents, overextended teachers, and uncertain adolescents at ease.
I’m drawn to this work, in part, because I remember my own early adolescence with unforgiving clarity. A quick visual tour of my own middle school experience will show you what I mean.
As you can see, I had the natural good looks, style, and poise of a sixth-grade A-lister. Why my classmates didn’t copy my outfits like they did my tests, your guess is as good as mine.
And here I am in 1983, getting ready to perform a jazz dance number to the 1966 Broadway hit “If They Could See Me Now”, popularized for me by Kathie Lee Gifford’s catchy TV commercials for Carnival Cruise Lines.
(I guess I always had my fingertips on the pulse of cool?)
By eighth grade, I’d achieved a level of self-confidence and sophistication that can best be measured by my brave choice to pin a giant brooch on my corduroy suspenders for picture day.
While other kids my age pulled together Madonna and Run-D.M.C. inspired looks, my attempts at style inexplicably detoured toward a Steve Urkel/Octogenarian aesthetic.
The point is, I work with young adolescents because I know what it feels like to be on the fringe, and all adolescents, no matter how seemingly confident or popular, feel on the fringe in one way or another. The same is true for parents of adolescents. Even the ones who show up as the happiest of families on social media will tell you their kids make them feel like complete strangers at times.
I’m here to help. I want for you, your school, your family, and your community to feel more connected. Here on my site, you’ll find information on my books, speaking events, parenting support group, and summer camps…all created to help foster stronger connections. Thanks for visiting!