June 27, 2014
"How should a society be structured to ensure peace? In the Haudenosaunee tradition there is a clear order of priority. The aim of the society is to raise happy, community oriented, self confident people, so the focus is on how children are raised to give them the experiences that create this. Putting the children at the centre also means ensuring that mothers in particular, and all parents and care-givers are given the support they need. It’s as if these people had an instinctive understanding of what humanistic psychology has told us, and neuroscience is increasingly confirming, that having happy healthy mothers during pregnancy and in the days and months after birth is really important to creating resilient, caring and self-resourced human beings."

—  Sophy Banks at Transition Network. Sophy Banks on the politics of the heart

June 10, 2014
"Black children need teachers who can reflect the history of our people to them in an honest and empowering way. They also need teachers who see them, who don’t think of them as deficient, as problems to solve, or as thugs-in-training, when they are really just children, innocent and eager and as capable of learning as anyone else. They need teachers who can love them. In a world that tells them they are less, having authority figures, from an early age, who believe in their humanity, in their goodness, in their extraordinariness, is everything."

Mia McKenzie at Black Girl DangerousThe White Teachers I Wish I Never Had

Via Reclaim UC at Sunday Reading.

May 6, 2014
"The right question to ask isn’t ‘‘Does the Internet make us free?’’ The right question to ask is ‘‘How can the Internet make us free?’’"

Cory Doctorow at Locus OnlineCory Doctorow: How to Talk to Your Children About Mass Surveillance

March 29, 2014
"The many skills children develop through play, particularly the self-control practiced and refined in imaginary play, are related to long-term academic achievement."

Wendy Banning and Ginny Sullivan quoted in an article by David Sobel at Yes! MagazineYou Can’t Bounce Off the Walls If There Are No Walls: Outdoor Schools Make Kids Happier—and Smarter

Lens on Outdoor Learning

March 29, 2014
"Howard Glasser’s biggest fear in life is that a child might grow up not knowing how great a person he is. It keeps Glasser awake at night sometimes, this image of a kid thinking he’s no good. It lodges a pit in his throat."

Ryan D’Agostino at EsquireTHE DRUGGING OF THE AMERICAN BOY

via ShrinkRants

Howard Glasser

March 8, 2014
"I don’t care about Republicans and Democrats. But we are talking about children that need to be fed. Cutting school lunch programs doesn’t accomplish that."

Laura Schroff quoted in an article by Jason Linkins at Huffington PostPaul Ryan’s ‘Brown Bag’ Anecdote Seems To Have Been Purloined 

February 13, 2014

Children Being in the World

a film by KB Jinan. see www.re-cognition.org for more.

To be of the Earth is to know …

the restlessness of being a seed

the darkness of being planted

the struggle towards the light

the joy of bursting and bearing fruit

the love of being food for someone

the scattering of your seeds

the decay of the seasons

the mystery of death

the miracle of birth

~John Soos

May 13, 2013
"The moral is not a prelude. Neither is it an interlude inserted midstream. No, moral follows denouement. In fact, without the narrative, the moral is easily dismissed as a fatuous platitude or a boring cliche. In the end, the story alone gestates, rears, and educates the moral, thereby anchoring it firmly in the heart."

Kate Fincke at 3 Quarks DailyMR. NOBODY: HOW CHILDREN USE METAPHOR TO GET TO SLEEP, COPE, GRIEVE AND GROW

April 26, 2013
"The vaccine summit builds on a commitment last year by nearly 200 countries to eradicate polio, develop new and improved vaccines at affordable prices, and deliver them to every child by 2020."

Desmond Tutu at Project SyndicateVaccination’s Lifetime of Blessings

January 18, 2013
"

Why do armed groups recruit large numbers of children as fighters, often coercively?

…The answer lies in more attention to the strategic interaction between rebel leaders and recruits. We adapt theories of industrial organization to rebellious groups and show how, being less able fighters, children are attractive recruits if and only if they are easier to intimidate, indoctrinate, and misinform than adults. This ease of manipulation interacts with the costliness of war crimes to influence rebel leaders’ incentives to coerce children into war.

"

Chris Blattman at his blog. What child soldiering tells us about trafficking, child labor, and enslavement

From a paper  by Chris Blattman with Bernd Beber (Ungated working paper here).

A week or so ago I posted a link to an interview with writer Barry Lopez with Terry Gross at Fresh Air. Lopez discusses writing an article for Harper’s Magazine about hischildhood sexual abuse. Sometimes I have to kind of force myself to listen to or read about really bad stuff. So I was surprised that listening to the whole interview, about 40 minutes, was so engaging.

What impressed me so much was how Lopez had a perspective from his “child’s eye” view. It’s not that such trauma is easy to forget, but just growing up people change; so it’s really hard, for example, to “remember” what it was like before you learned to read or to  add numbers. Somehow Lopez remembered, or developed an intellectual understanding of how he as a boy thought, and what he had to say deeply affected me. 

I think everyone wants to protect not just our children, but children in general. It’s hard for me to read or listen to reports of child sexual abuse because it’s so upsetting. Reading research papers is just hard. But Barry Lopez’s story and Beber and Blattman’s paper together perform a sort of pincer maneuver on coercion of children. These reports are important because they help people and communities better understand how we can protect children.

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