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News Bites, Feb. 7: Do French Parents Rule?, The Benefits of Spousal Arguments, and the UW's New Math

Editor’s note: This is a new weekly digest of stories we’re following — trends, news you can use and provocative parenting reads. Got a tip? Write

- The superiority of the French? Haven't yet heard about Bringing up Bébé: One American Woman Discovers the Wisdom of French Parenting? Just wait. Bébé is a just-released book that was excerpted in the Wall Street Journal on Saturday (yes, the same WSJ that published Amy Chua's excerpt on the superiority of Chinese mothers a mere year ago). Read the excerpt -- it's hard not to, with that title -- and then read the NYT's Motherlode post, a well-crafted rant that begins "Enough already."

- The wonder of a dog: On a very different note, don't miss the miraculous story of how a golden retriever service dog reached out and through to a raging boy, adopted from Russia, with myriad problems rooted in his mother's alcoholism.

- The new math at the UW: Another must-read from the NYT looks at how universities like the UW are funding low-income students -- increasingly, by accepting large numbers of foreign students who are paying out-of-state tuition. A whopping 11 percent of the UW's nearly 5,800 freshmen this year are from China. The downside: this means fewer spots for in-staters who are paying less.

Quick takes

- Should we take parenting advice from Brad Pitt?

- New research on why spanking doesn't work.

- Child abuse affects more babies than SIDS -- and why a little education can help reverse this disturbing trend.

- Two keys to closet organization.

- Study finds that arguing with your spouse leads to longer-lasting, stronger marriages.

- Is there an upside to dyslexia?

- Cookus Interruptus on the health magic of steel-cut oats

- Lisa Belkin on what the real Suzy Komen would have thought of last week.

- Seattle Mama Doc on chores.

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