Thursday, January 17, 2013

Kim John Payne on Boys

Some little gems from Kim John Payne's lecture on boys last night at Summerfield Waldorf School in Santa Rosa.

Boys need to know 3 things (plus one :))

1-Who's in charge
Too often, these days, parents have created a child run and child centered world. Parents need to be at the top of the hierarchy. A child centered, adult led world is the goal.
2-What are the rules
They need absolute clear boundaries with clear communication. Don't expect them to get off the couch and help you do dishes unless you have DIRECTLY told them that it is necessary.
3-Are they meant
Don't change the rules, be consistent.
4-Where's the food! (my son is always hungry!)

In a world that has lost touch with actually, physically building, boys have lost their role. Everything is all ready to go. Press a button and watch what happens. Boys don't want to watch, this doesn't make the proper connections in the brain that give them self worth. They need to feel industrious. Hammers, nails, board...anything that they can build themselves is what's needed.

The percentage of boys diagnosed with ADD is astounding. I love that KJP (as we affectionately call him) prefers to call it Attention Priority Disorder. Things are moving so fast that for a boy it's just a matter of not being able to prioritize information at the speed that our society is expecting. It takes 8 seconds for boys to process an image. How fast are those images flashing on the TV? Think of the backlog! Boys need TIME! Without it, they push back just to hold their own form and then of course they get into trouble. They feel under attack with all this pressure. Dial it down for them. He also mentioned the sad suicide rate and that boys are most likely to succeed at it. Frightening. Soccer practice, homework, social pressure, media intensity and on and on. These poor kids. It's true, there is an undeclared war on childhood. We need to stand for our boys. Our boys will become men.

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