Getting Smart Releases Smart Parents Book

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New Resource Published to Help Inform, Involve and Inspire Parenting for Powerful Learning

Just in time for the new school year, learning design firm Getting Smart is releasing Smart Parents: Parenting For Powerful Learning, a comprehensive guide for parents interested in learning more about creating, choosing and advocating for student-centered learning experiences.

“This is not a general guidebook on parenting – you can find hundreds of those at the library,” says Tom Vander Ark, CEO of Getting Smart. “This is a resource for parents to become informed, involved, inspired and intentional in their children’s education. It’s designed to facilitate conversations about the important education decisions parents face in a rapidly changing digital world, helping them navigate through the complex maze of new learning opportunities and building learning goals beyond what traditional tests can measure.”

Vander Ark co-authored the book with Getting Smart team members Carri Schneider, Director of Knowledge Design; and Bonnie Lathram, Learner Experience Manager. The book combines the experience, anecdotes and knowledge of more than 60 parent contributors. Content stems from Getting Smart’s popular Smart Parents blog series on and  The Huffington Post, a forum for stories by parents, for parents that exists through a partnership with the Nellie Mae Education Foundation.

“This book grew out of our own experiences as parents and educators, as well as the experiences of parents who know powerful learning when we see it, but don’t always know how to find it or create it,” says Schneider. “We discovered, and captured for readers, an approach that empowers parents with new mindsets and tools to cultivate educational experiences for their children that place them at the center of their own learning.”

Smart Parents provides advice and tips from parents, and includes a customized toolkit organized by student age to help families promote student-centered and personalized learning at home, at school and everywhere in between.

“We live in an era of extraordinary learning opportunities,” says Lathram. “This book seeks to help parents better understand the role they can play in advocating for their child’s individual needs and provides guidance for parents around the significant shifts that are occurring because of technological change. This book has compelling stories from parents that are in the trenches and provides practical tools for supporting student-centered, highly engaging learning in the digital age.”

Smart Parents: Parenting for Powerful Learning will be available for purchase in print and various ebook formats in August 2015. The book is the second in a series that began with Smart Cities That Work for Everyone: 7 Keys to Education and Employment, which discusses the importance learning has on the health of cities and provides a framework for action and tools for implementation. It was also authored by Vander Ark and Mary Ryerse, Getting Smart’s Director of Strategic Design.

Co-authors are available for interviews. Please call Catherine at 206.291.7190 or email her at



About Getting Smart

Getting Smart® is a learning design firm passionate about innovations in learning. We help education organizations construct cohesive and forward-thinking strategies for branding, awareness, advancement and communication, and public and media relations. We are advocates for better K-12 education as well as early, post-secondary and informal learning opportunities for all students. We attempt to accelerate and improve the shift to digital learning. On we cover important events, trends, products, books and reports. Follow Getting Smart on Facebook and Twitter.