Kids are master manipulators. They play up their charms, pit adults against one another, and engage in loud, public wailing. So it's your job to keep up with them, Carnegie Mellon's Kevin Zollman says. His new book, The Game Theorist's Guide to Parenting -written with journalist Paul Raeburn-explains how.
If you suspect your kids haven't done their homework, ask many specific questions: Which subject? What did you learn? How long did it take? What was the hardest part? The act of maintaining an elaborate lie will discomfort them. Telling the truth will be easier.