27 August 2024


So You Want to Know What's Good for Your Kids?

Dr Norman Swan 

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Bestselling author Dr Norman Swan returns to the Hawke Centre to present insights from his latest book, So You Want To Know What's Good For Your Kids?, followed by an in-conversation with the University of South Australia’s Professor Susan Hillier. Norman's book is the ultimate parenting guide which cuts through to what matters most in raising a healthy, resilient child from birth to ten. 

We all want our kids to grow into happy, healthy adults and the first ten years count more than any other time in our lives. So what should we be doing to give them the best chance? Most books on childhood stop at age five and start again in adolescence. They miss the critical primary school age years leading to adolescence - the years that make all the difference.

With a background in paediatrics and an over thirty-year career monitoring and broadcasting the latest medical research, Dr Norman Swan fills that gap. He has unparalleled experience in delivering straight-talking, honest, unbiased and commonsense health information. Norman Swan knows what issues parents are worried about throughout childhood. Drawing on the questions he hears time and again, in this book he gives you the information you want and the answers you need to raise healthy and happy children, with a particular focus on the crucial years of five to ten - the runway to adolescence.

So You Want to Know What's Good for Your Kids? is a one-stop handbook that you can trust to clear away all the unnecessary advice, allowing you to focus on what makes the difference for kids. Norman Swan replaces myths, half-truths and misconceptions with practical knowledge on topics that parents agonise about - including sleep, diet, school refusal, screens, social media, what genetics determine and what you can and can't change, anxiety, ADHD and much, much more. This book will help you focus on the decisions that can make your kids the best they can be.

Imprints Booksellers will be selling copies of Norman's book, So You Want To Know What's Good For Your Kids?, in the Auditorium foyer on the night of the event.

Presented by The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre 

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dr norman swan
author and journalist

Trained in paediatrics, Dr Norman Swan was one of the first medically qualified journalists in Australia, with a broadcast career spanning more than 30 years. He currently hosts Radio National's The Health Report and co-hosts What’s That Rash. During the pandemic he co-hosted the hugely popular Coronacast. He is also a reporter on ABC’s 7.30 and a reporter and commentator on other television and radio news outlets.

In addition to being an active journalist and health broadcaster, Dr Swan pursues his commitment to children as a long standing board member of the Australian Research Alliance for Children and Youth (ARACY). He was also the co-founder of Tonic Media Network and the Aboriginal Health Television Network, health channels which play in GP and Aboriginal Medical Service waiting rooms.

He has presented on his bestselling books at the Hawke Centre, including So You Think You Know What's Good for You? (2021) and So You Want to Live Younger Longer? (2022).

The Health Report: Coronacast
X: @normanswan


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Professor Susan Hillier
university of south australia

Professor Susan Hillier is an academic and clinician with teaching and research interests in the broad field of neuroscience and rehabilitation. One of her main research areas is on the effectiveness of rehabilitation approaches after stroke - this includes the role of afferent stimulation or training using multimodal feedback, as well as models of rehabilitation and access to rehabilitation.

The influence of rehabilitation on neuroplasticity is also a focus. Susan also has an interest in movement education and intervention approaches for other populations such as children with developmental coordination disorder or people who are ageing.


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Presented by
The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre



While the views presented by speakers within The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre public program are their own and are not necessarily those of either the University of South Australia, or The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre, they are presented in the interest of open debate and discussion in the community and reflect our themes of: Strengthening our Democracy - Valuing our Diversity - Building our Future. The Hawke Centre reserves the right to change their program at any time without notice.