Only bad parenting
I grew up in a large family with younger siblings who I helped babysit, and I’ve taken notes watching those around me become new parents. I thought I had an idea of what kind of upbringing I wanted to encourage for my son, but I figured that as a new mom it wouldn’t hurt to get a few different perspectives on parenting. I went in search of books, grabbing many from the local library and diligently reading through the pages to find only small techniques I wanted to adopt. When I discovered There’s No Such Thing as Bad Weather, however, I felt the need to own the book because it just spoke to my roots.
Written by Linda Åkeson McGurk, this book offers the opportunity to take a look at how time in nature can have a huge impact on a child, both academically and socially. This viewpoint is alongside a culture comparison of Scandinavia versus the United States. The author is originally from Sweden, but after meeting her husband (an American) on a school trip in Australia she moved to the state of Indiana to begin a life together. As the mother of two young girls, she notices many differences in how Americans incorporate nature into the learning process and everyday life versus her experiences growing up in Sweden. This variance is brought even more to life when Linda has to move back to Sweden for six months to be with her father while he undergoes chemotherapy, bringing her daughters with her.
The book covers everything from the well-known practice of parents leaving their child outside of stores while they shop inside to forest schools where students spend a large amount of time outdoors during the day. McGurk also supplies a quick dictionary for any Swedish words referenced at the beginning, as well as a quick summary of her eight Scandinavian parenting tips in the back of the book. I don’t want to give too much more away, because it is worth reading cover to cover. I’ve already earmarked many pages, and am glad I own this book, as I plan to reference this book for years to come.
Anna Oksnevad is the creator of Norwegian-American lifestyle blog KeepingKoselig.com, and works as a Marketing Manager in the corporate world. Anna is from Decorah, Iowa, and now resides in Minneapolis with her husband, new baby, and two dogs. She studied at Luther College and the University of Oslo, and has an MBA from the University of St. Thomas.
This article originally appeared in the July 27, 2018, issue of The Norwegian American. To subscribe, visit SUBSCRIBE or call us at (206) 784-4617.