Their Name is Today by Johann Christoph Arnold
There’s hope for childhood. Despite a perfect storm of hostile forces that are robbing children of a healthy childhood, courageous parents and teachers who know what’s best for children are turning the tide.
Johann Christoph Arnold, whose books on education, parenting, and relationships have helped more than a million readers through life’s challenges, draws on the stories and voices of parents and educators on the ground, and a wealth of personal experience. He surveys the drastic changes in the lives of children, but also the groundswell of grassroots advocacy and action that he believes will lead to the triumph of common sense and time-tested wisdom.
Arnold takes on technology, standardized testing, over stimulation, academic pressure, marketing to children, over-diagnosis and much more, calling on everyone who loves children to combat these threats to childhood and find creative ways to help children flourish. Every parent, teacher, and childcare provider has the power to make a difference, by giving children time to play, access to nature, and personal attention, and most of all, by defending their right to remain children.
In Their Name is Today: Reclaiming Childhood in a Hostile World, author Johann Christoph Arnold argues that there is an epidemic that is sweeping through the lives of our children. He argues that parents are pushing their children earlier and earlier to levels that are not necessary. He argues that kids lives are so structured and that society is bombarding them with too much information and too much technology too soon. He argues that there should be less structure in a child's life and that children should be allowed to have free play, specifically in nature, and should be allowed to be a child and not a mini-adult. I love this quote that Arnold says in chapter 8: " Comparing children-whether our own or other people's- is just as bad as labeling them." (p.123). I think his philosophy is summed up in this quote: "Our response upon encountering a child must be nothing less than reverence. Perhaps because the world sounds old-fashioned, its true meaning has been blurred. Reverence is more than love. It includes an appreciation for the qualities children possess (and which we ourselves have lost), a readiness to rediscover their value, and the humility to learn from them." (p. 133).
This was an interesting read to me. I appreciated where the author was coming from, as I struggle with how far do I push my kids? How to I make sure that I am doing the right thing by them? How do I guide them and give them opportunities without overwhelming them and keeping their days structured? This book gave me a lot of food for thought and I believe all parents would benefit from reading it.
DISCLAIMER: I received this book free from Handlebar Marketing in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.