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Obamas as a Role Model for TN Parents

January 5, 2009

Nashville, TN – It's been nearly 50 years since there's been a family in the White House with young children, and parenting organizations predict that the Obamas may soon become role models for parenting skills that others nationwide will try to emulate.

Lysa Parker, co-founder of the group Attachment Parenting International, says she's already impressed by some of the "Obama family values," which reportedly include family reading nights and requiring the two daughters to make their own beds and stick to regularly-scheduled bedtimes. However, Parker says she was particularly struck by Michelle Obama's statement that she plans to continue to make time for her children as the new First Lady.

"I'm most impressed that Mrs. Obama has elected to stay with her children the first year, to help them transition into their new school and into their new lifestyle in Washington, D.C."

And there's another "parenting practice" Parker hopes others will copy from the Obama family.

"The children are a striking example of well behaved, respectful children who have been raised without the use of spanking. I think that's a strong example to all parents."

In Parker's opinion, their very public lives mean the Obamas are likely to shape how other parents raise and discipline their children. She warns, however, that parents should not unfairly judge their own performance based on media images - of the Obamas, or any other celebrities raising children.

Dick Layman, Public News Service - TN