walkitout (walkitout) wrote,

Complaining about _A Running Start_

The introduction and first chapter are so bad you probably should just skip them. I'm going to not hold those chapters against the author.

The second chapter -- why you shouldn't enroll toddler/preschoolers in organized sports -- is okay. It has entire runs of paragraphs, whole pages, that are quite good, but then the author takes it all back after, and that's somewhat annoying. If you tell people that kids aren't developmentally able to do something until they are 8, but allow that some children might develop exceptionally early, you are only going to encourage people to do foolish things that you supposedly wrote the book to discourage.

Chapter 3 is an effort to provide vocabulary and definitions for movement. I have some Issues with these.

"Throwing consists of moving an object away from the body, through the air, using the hands."

That just seems like a problem. Are you throwing a scarf if you put it on the back of your hand and flip your hand over and let it drop? While you lean over it? Are you _not_ throwing if you toss a ball -- at your face? Torso? Legs?

I am willing to tolerate the hands part, if the away from the body thing is fixed. Dictionary definitions usually do at least marginally better than this. I think she may have been trying to avoid use of the word "propel".

ETA: I don't know why this never occurred to me before, but Jeter sort of has a humorous name, given his occupation.

ETAYA: There's a callout box about gymnastics.

"You don't need to enroll your child in a formal gymnastics program to help her learn body management." Okay, well, duh. The author then goes on to talk about rolling across a lawn or down a hill, walking along the edge of a sandbox or along a curb, the merits of climbing the ladder on a slide and then trees, and hanging from monkey bars. "if you don't have these things in your backyard, you can always head to the nearest playground."

On the one hand, sure. On the other hand, in the summer around here, ticks, and in the winter, well, let's just say there are some weather issues. Sign up at the gymnastics place and you can go to open gym and do all that stuff indoors in a supervised and graduated environment, with a creative teacher designing obstacle courses and so forth. If the kid is interested, there are more structured options available. Presumably the author has in mind something else when referring to "formal gymnastics" programs?

ETA I'm All Done Now: Rae Pica is quoting Jane Healy's stupidity about computers. It was probably bullshit at the time, and is _definitely_ ridiculous now.

Don't read this book. It is a terrible waste. I will be putting it in the recycle bin, because I don't want to have on my conscience the idea that someone else might pay any attention to it.
Tags: not-a-book-review
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