Noted Author Visits GEMS to Discuss 'Slow Parenting'
Carl Honore, a noted author, broadcaster and lecturer, recently visited GEMS World Academy Chicago as part of the school’s Parent University speaker series.
Honore, who spoke at GEMS after appearing at the Chicago Humanities Festival, talked to GEMS parents about the “slow movement,” which asks parents to reconsider how they spend time with their children.
“Even with our families, every moment of the day now can seem like a race against the clock,” Honore said. “Many of us are racing through our lives rather than actually living them.”
Honore said that the concept of slow parenting doesn’t mean that parents should literally do things more slowly; instead, it encourages parents to do things better, to enhance the quality of the time they spend with their children.
He said parents need to allow their children to have what he called “ladybug moments” — spontaneous, unstructured periods of play and exploration. Honore came up with the phrase when he noticed his own child stop everything to observe a ladybug with wonder. Too often, Honore said, parents whisk children from one activity to another without allowing for these ladybug moments.
“Children’s lives have been hijacked by adults in a way we’ve never seen before,” he said.
After his talk, Honore met individually with parents and signed copies of his books, In Praise of Slowness and Under Pressure: Rescuing Our Children from the Culture of Hyper-Parenting.
The Parent University speaker series brings experts to GEMS to discuss issues of concern to today’s parents The next installment will take place Tuesday, Sept. 6. Dean DeLisle, an expert on digital networking and communication, will talk about how to be a good “digital citizen” online. More information about that talk will be available soon.