Kim John Payne, author of the acclaimed book, “Simplicity Parenting,” will give a parenting lecture at 7 p.m. Monday, Sept. 19, at the Veterans’ Memorial Theatre, 203 E. 14th St., Davis.
Payne, an internationally recognized author and counselor, will discuss “how to use the extraordinary power of less to raise calmer, happier, more secure kids.”
“Reclaim for your children the space and freedom that all kids need for their attention to deepen and their individuality to flourish,” a news release said. “(This will be) an evening of inspiration, ideas and a blueprint for change.”
Payne asserts that many of today’s child behavior problems come from too much stuff.
“All children are quirky, that’s what makes them lovable, who they are,” he said in the release. “But these cumulative stresses slide those quirks along the behavior spectrum into disorders — the dreaded D’s. Simplicity parenting is a way to slide the child back down the spectrum. They go from having a label back to being lovable and quirky.”
Payne has worked with families devastated by AIDS or war in Asia and Africa. He says children in western countries have many of the same stresses.
“There is not a lot of difference between how kids overstressed are acting in parts of Asia and Africa. The children in the developing world often have had negative sensory overwhelm, and we give our children sensory overwhelm here — too many trinkets, too many choices, too much information — and this causes a cumulative stress issue in kids that leads to behavioral disorders.
“Our children are living in the undeclared war on childhood.”
Payne will help parents at the talk create their own “simplicity menu” for their family, breaking it down into five layers: simplify the environment, meal times and food, schedules and information. He asks that parents see childhood as an unfolding experience, not an enrichment opportunity.
“If it is an enrichment opportunity, then we’re in an arms race, trying to get the most for our child. This is fundamentally a con, and not healthy. “
He adds that children respond well to this approach.
“You choose whatever fits naturally in your family life. When a family simplifies, the kids love it. It’s not a battle. We think kids will put up resistance, but they don’t; they like it.”
“It’s about warmth and connecting. In simplifying parenting, we get closer to our children, they no longer have to fight for our attention, everything becomes easier and it is actually achieved by doing less.”
Payne, M.Ed., consultant and trainer to more than 110 independent and public North American schools, has been a school counselor, adult educator, consultant, researcher and educator for nearly 30 years and a private family counselor for 15 years.
For more information, visit www.daviswaldorf.org/simplicity.
A $5 donation is suggested at the door. Space is limited. RSVP by calling (530) 753-1651 or visit http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/193631.