Excerpted from my book, Searching for Tom Sawyer: How Parents and Congregations Can Stop the Exodus of Boys from Church. When Tommy turns two, his parents, like many parents, begin thinking about preschool. Preschool is a fairly new phenomenon in our country. In the 1960s, about five hundred thousand kids attended preschool. (When I was a kid, the girl next door, about my age, had to go to nursery school. We all wondered what was wrong with her!) Today, preschool has become almost mandatory … [Read more...]
For over a generation we have been fighting for our girls…creating a world where they can be anything they want to be; a world where they are treated as equals to boys.That hard work has paid off:Girls have now passed boys in almost every level of education More girls than boys take college prep classes in school More girls than boys take the SAT Girls get better grades than boys and graduate with high GPA’s More girls than boys are attending and graduating from col … [Read more...]
I had a fascinating “discussion” with a Facebook friend a few weeks ago. He has been a supporter of my work on boys and is passionate about the issue as well. But he took me to task, saying I had “lost it,” I’d “lost focus,” I’d “contaminated my ministry to boys,” all because I also, from time to time, address the issues and challenges that our girls are facing in the 21st Century. Bottom line, I had sold my soul to the “feminist agenda” and had therefore lost my ability to fight for our boys. … [Read more...]
Dear Clover (age 4 ½),From the moment you were born (even before then) I have prayed God’s deepest blessing on your life.As you grow into a woman, I pray the following for you:That you will always know, no matter what, that God loves you and will always walk through life with you That you will always know, no matter what, that you are God’s beloved daughter and that he will never give up on you That you will always lean into the God who leans into you That you will hear the inv … [Read more...]
It’s tough being a boy these days.Just ask 6-year-old Hunter Yelton who was suspended from school for sexual harassment; i.e., he kissed a girl on her hand.Just ask 10-year-old Johnny Jones who was suspended from school and threatened with expulsion for “firearms related issues;” i.e., he pretended he was shooting a bow and arrow.Just ask 8-year-old Jordan Bennett who was suspended from school for using his finger to simulate a gun while playing cops and robbers with a friend … [Read more...]
What Does it Profit Parents to Over-Program their Children….and Lose the Souls of the Kids in the Process?
At the end of a seminar I led on boys a man in his 70’s pulled me aside to ask a few questions. In doing so he made some interesting observations. He noted that, in his opinion:Far too many parents today over-program their children often at the expense of building character in them. Rather than starting with the question: What kind of person do I want my child to be?, parents today seem to be asking, What kinds of activities does my child need to participate in in order to keep up with th … [Read more...]
Faster than a speeding bullet… More powerful than a turbo jet engine… Able to leap tall buildings in a single bound… Look, up in the sky…it’s a bird…it’s a plane… It’s a boy! In my last post I suggested that our attempts to get rid of boy stereotypes has left our boys without any idea of what it means to be a boy. We’ve robbed them (and us) of any vision of boyhood and haven’t replaced it with anything of substance.I also suggested that just because something’s a stereotype doesn’t mean … [Read more...]