Discover Your
Parenting Style

Do you hover over your children like a Boeing CH-47? Do you finish their puzzles and do their homework? Do you bubble wrap your children each day before school and walk your five-year-old to the park on a leash?


Take this simple quiz to find out whether you need to take a step back and let your children learn a few of life's lessons on their own turf.

1. Your Kindergartener comes home from school each day with only her dessert eaten out of her lunch. You:

a. Have a talk with her about healthy eating habits. Fill her lunch only with wholesome choices that are nutritious and tasty.

b. Yell at her and threaten to stop giving her dessert. But then give it to her anyway. You can't handle listening to all that whining.

c. Go to the school every day at lunch and monitor her while she is eating.

2. Your three year old refuses to eat breakfast and it is time for you to leave to take him to daycare. You:

a. Give him a spanking and send him to daycare hungry.

b. Send him to daycare hungry, but inform the caregivers what you are doing. Make sure that he has plenty of healthy choices in his lunchbox because he will probably be very hungry come lunchtime.

c. Spend an extra 30 minutes spoon-feeding him and arrive to work late. What can you do? He needs to eat!

3. Your fourth grader has a bad habit of forgetting his homework and expecting you to drive it up to the school for him. You:

a. Let the natural consequences happen. When he gets a poor grade, share his frustration. It is a bummer when you worked hard on something and don't get the credit, simply because you forgot it at home! Brainstorm ideas on how he can remember to bring his homework every day.

b. Act exasperated but drive it up to school. You don't want him to fail, do you?

c. Yell at him when he gets a bad grade and ground him for the rest of the semester. That'll teach him.

4. Your four year old is upset during a play date because he and his friend cannot agree on whether to play Legos or dump trucks. You:

a. Observe what is happening. Watch the children negotiate and see if they can work it out on their own. Only get involved if the children become aggressive with one another.

b. This situation would never occur because you always mediate all your play dates and organize every activity.

c. Grab your child by the shoulder and drag him home. He'll learn not to be a brat in other people's homes.

5. The teacher sends home a note that your first grader is having trouble getting along with the kids in class. You:

a. Become a room parent. Get friendly with some of the cool kids and encourage them to play with your child.

b. Throw the note in the trash. That teacher is stupid. Your kid is just fine.

c. Talk to your child about what is going on. Ask him about his friendships at school. Discuss positive ways of interacting with school classmates. Also, make an appointment with the teacher to better understand her perspective. Learn more about the situation and make a plan for how to help your child integrate better into the classroom setting.

Continue reading for the rest of the quiz and to determine your style!

Continue »

Tags: helicopter parent hover involved micromanage natural consequences opportunities for learning overinvolved overparenting search for balance

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Comments on "Quiz: Are You a Helicopter Parent?"

amused January 23, 2012 | 11:45 AM

My daughter and her husband are helicopter parents - her being the worst. Their child is the best, the brightest, (genius for sure and going to have tested ASAP)the prettiest, etc. It never ends. They seems to feel they have produced the perfect being. We smile - they will learn but in the meantime I wonder what will happen to the child.

Mommy Crib Notes November 09, 2010 | 9:08 AM

Isn't it interesting the various approaches to childrearing? In my parent group we all had similar styles until "the screamer" entered our group. Now, at any given gathering, you can hear her screaming her kid's name at least 7 times during a two-hour time frame...and it's uneffective. Anyway, loved the piece, but you forgot the best option for question #2 which is give your kid a banana or granola bar or some other portable yummy item for breakfast in the car on the way to school/daycare. Always works for me!

A Modern Military Mother November 07, 2010 | 10:21 AM

My husband is a helicopter pilot - a Boeing CH47 helicopter so I was hooked from the start!! I am a hands off parents.

London City Mum November 07, 2010 | 6:06 AM

I have to attach a photo of myself to their lunch boxes so the kids actually remember who I am and what I look like. LCM x

Wife on the RollerCoaster November 05, 2010 | 1:44 PM

Woo hoo, I'm an involved parent!!! Wow, I guess all those years of reading parenting magazines and online articles paid off! Great quiz. :)

Mandy November 05, 2010 | 8:07 AM

LOVED #7. That's a nightly conversation in our house. Of course, once, my son said, "Okay! You can give all of these," sweeping his hand across his art supplies, "to other kids. And these," gesturing towards his Legos, "to Benny." Left me in a bit of a pickle.

Heather November 05, 2010 | 1:24 AM

I'm not telling you what I got, no way i'm incriminating myself! lol

Steve November 04, 2010 | 11:52 AM

Helicopter parent? I'm a one man swat team. First sign of trouble it's total security shutdown, intelligence black-out and then full debriefing!

Very Bored in Catalunya November 04, 2010 | 5:57 AM

Ah ha, pleasantly surprised myself there, so thought I'd be a 'hands off'.

Kimberly November 03, 2010 | 11:16 AM

I've always described myself as a helicopter parent of free range children. My score was %100 involved parent. Maybe I'm ok after all :)

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