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Charlie Appelstein Resources


Charlie Appelstein Resource Library

Described as “the best youth care trainer in America” by Robert Lieberman, former president of the American Association of Children’s Residential Centers, Charlie has devoted his entire adult career to helping children and youth struggling with emotional and behavioral challenges and those who guide them. An engaging, informative, and humorous speaker, Charlie is the author of three critically acclaimed books on youth care and the creator of two innovative CDs that helps kids and parents make better choices and lead happier lives. Charlie’s strength-based approach delivers a message of hope and possibility to our most vulnerable youth and those who shape and influence their lives.

Appelstein Training Resources offers  a wide variety of training items, including:  books, CDs, and DVDs for educators, child & youth care professionals, and parents.

If you would like to borrow any of the following resources available, please email: Sharon Calaunan at


No Such Thing as a Bad Kid! (3 copies available)
Written primarily for professionals and volunteers who guide kids with emotional and behavioral challenges, the revised edition of No Such Thing As a Bad Kid is packed with positive, trauma-informed, strength-based principles and techniques that help child-guiders to develop powerful and transforming relationships with the kids they guide. This empowering handbook opens by portraying misbehavior as a call for help. It then guides the reader through “decoding” the message and, via hundreds of hands-on tips, sample dialogues, and inspiring anecdotes into research-backed approaches for revolutionizing interactions with kids at risk. The book is all about changing the negative mindsets many kids harbor and giving them hope for better days. Even parents of children not at risk will benefit from this book.

The Gus Chronicles: Reflections From an Abused Kid
An easy-to-read, poignant account of life in out-of-home placements, The Gus Chronicles follows the experiences of Gus E. Studelmeyer, a fictional thirteen-year-old victim of sexual abuse. Gus’ character is a composite of the many children author and veteran youth care specialist Charlie Appelstein has worked with over the years. Gus addresses issues such as abuse and neglect, loyalty to family of origin, self-esteem building, sensitivity to the misuse of power, physical restraint, and much more.

The Gus Chronicles II: Reflections From a Kid Who Has Been Abused
This sequel to Appelstein’s award-winning Gus Chronicles is an easy-to-read fictional account of troubled children living in out-of-home placements. Gus E. Studelmeyer returns a year older (14), and a wee bit wiser. Issues Gus addresses include abuse and neglect, loyalty to family of origin, death of a parent, prejudice, physical restraint, humor, and much more.


The Power of a Strength-Based Approach in Reshaping the Lives of Children and Youth
What is strength-based practice? The power of a positive attitude; strength based communication techniques including: reframing, asking solution-focused questions, and using inspirational metaphors; enhancing empathy and the need to avoid pejorative labeling; self-esteem building; creative self-management strategies; when and how to use incentives; respectful limit-setting; and helping young people who appear cognitively inflexible.

Strength-Based Parenting
What is strength-based parenting and how is it practiced? Verbal interventions that positively inform child development; strategies for enhancing self-esteem in children and youth; the importance of being developmentally aware; the do’s and don’ts of respectful limit-setting; and the importance of managing number one (keeping your cool!) and building strong support networks.



Parent Rapsody
More than 25 singers and musicians were used to create Parent Rapsody, including: gospel singers from Boston’s Berklee School of Music; the choir from Temple Shalom in Newton, MA; an award winning trumpet player from Boston College; an internationally renowned vocalist from Virginia, and various members of the popular band, The Adam Ezra Group.

This novel approach to parent education combines rhythm, rhyme, wordplay, and engaging melodies to promote core child-rearing practices. A handy companion for all seasons of family life.

One-Line Raps for Girls and Chaps
Our new CD contains a host of catchy sayings called one-line raps or cues (.e.g. “Let it go, Joe!”) put to rhythm and melody that can enhance a young person’s functioning. By listening to or saying them over and over again; in other words: practicing the desired behavior – real change can occur. Whether you use our rhythms and melodies or come up with your own, the lines contained within have all been field-tested to produce results.

Folks, if you’re dealing with a difficult behavior – just use a line and make things fine. Big problems don’t always require big solutions.