A consultant and trainer to more than sixty U.S. independent and
public schools, Kim John Payne, M.Ed., has been a school counselor
for eighteen years and a private family counselor-therapist for
fifteen. Payne has worked extensively with the North American and
U.K. Waldorf movements. He is currently project director of the
Waldorf Collaborative Counseling Program at Antioch University New
England, the director of a large research program on a drug-free
approach to attention priority issues disorders, and a Partner of
the Alliance for Childhood in Washington, D.C. He lives with his
wife and two children in Harlemville, New York.
Lisa M. Ross has been involved with books for more than twenty years, as an editor and literary agent, and now exclusively as a writer. She lives with her husband and two children in Stuyvesant, New York.
From the Hardcover edition.
Waldorf educator and school consultant Payne believes our families are being consumed by too much stuff, too many choices, too much information. Our society's collective stresses are interfering with our children's sense of security that allows for an emerging sense of self. Beginning with the home environment and covering such topics as toys, food, sleep, schedules, and sports, Payne persuasively shows how less is more. He wisely reminds us that in parenting, it is the spaces between the activities that relationships are built. This information is not new but perhaps sold under the banner of "simplicity" we will finally take heed.-Julianne J. Smith, Ypsilanti Dist. Lib., MI Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.
"Brilliant, wise, informative, innovative, entertaining, and urgently needed, this timely book is a godsend for all who love children, and for children themselves. It provides a doable plan for providing the kind of childhood kids desperately need today!"--Edward Hallowell, M.D., author of The Childhood Roots of Adult Happiness
"A wealth of practical ideas for reclaiming childhood and
establishing family harmony."--Publishers Weekly
"Brilliant."--Grand Rapids Press
"[Payne is] like a master closet reorganizer for the soul."--Time "This book is a wake-call for all of us who have misjudged what children need and can handle, and who have wandered so far from the best practices that we are raising neurologically damaged and emotionally stunted human beings as a result. Simplicity Parenting arises from dialogues with real people, from their questions and their needs. Kim John Payne is sharp, funny, and wise, and--best of all--he has something shattering but positive to say to an America that is struggling to know how to live."--Steve Biddulph, author of The Secret of Happy Children
"If you are raising children in these anxious times, you need this book. It will inspire you, reassure you, and, most important of all, it will remind you that less is more, that simplicity trumps complication, that rhythm and routine bring peace to the soul. In this profound and practical guide, Kim John Payne offers parents a doable, step-by-step approach to simplifying everyday family life, from the toy box to the dinner table. In the process, he reveals to us the rewards to be found in slowing down, savoring our children's childhoods, and more fully enjoying our own adult lives."--Katrina Kenison, author of The Gift of an Ordinary Day
"Simplicity Parenting takes the unusual and unusually wise stance that sometimes less can be more. Less as in less frenetic activity, less racing around, less clutter. Payne provides practical strategies for turning down the volume and creating a pace that fosters calmness, mindfulness, reflection, and individuality in children. Simplicity Parenting should be on every parent's (indeed, every person's) reading list."--Kathleen A. Brehony, Ph.D., author of Awakening at Midlife
"Kim John Payne helps parents better understand one of the most challenging issues of our time-the hurried, materialistic, competitive, highly pressured nature of today's childhood. After reading Simplicity Parenting, parents' new mantra will be 'less builds security, sanity, and connection.' And they will have the tools they need for implementing this mantra in their families."--Diane E. Levin, Ph.D., co-author of So Sexy So Soon
Waldorf educator and consultant Payne teams up with writer Ross to pre-sent an antidote for children who are overscheduled and overwhelmed by too much information and a fast-paced consumer culture that threatens the pace and playful essence of childhood. Payne claims that a protective filter should surround childhood, rather than the competitive, stressful adult world that has encroached on childhood's boundaries, preventing kids from developing resiliency with a sense of ease and well-being. But Payne is not a doomsayer: he presents a wealth of practical ideas for reclaiming childhood and establishing family harmony. In chapters covering four levels of simplification-environment, rhythm, schedules and "Filtering Out the Adult World"-Payne explains how parents can tackle extraneous stuff and stimulation by reducing the "mountain" of toys, limiting scheduled activities, providing valuable downtime and employing such "pressure valves" as storytelling and periods of quiet. According to the authors, limiting choices and activities will lead to kids who are more secure and less stressed, and to parents whose days are calmer. With fewer choices, Payne explains, families have the freedom to "appreciate things-and one another-more deeply." Though "simplicity parenting" may seem a stretch for some, others will find that Payne's program for restoring creative play, order and balance is long overdue. (Sept.) Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.