This story of six enterprising mothers from Manhattan's Morningside Heights (near Columbia University and Harlem) and their...

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SHARING THE CHILDREN: Village Child-Rearing Within the City

This story of six enterprising mothers from Manhattan's Morningside Heights (near Columbia University and Harlem) and their fight for a daycare center that works according to their standards -- not the city's, not Columbia's -- is told with much warmth and grit. They believe that the children should be supervised by the parents, not by hired supervisors. One morning or afternoon or sometimes a full day is contributed by each mother (or father); that way the parents share in raising the children, and the children also share the parents. Even in the beginning, few mothers were happy with the way their peer group ran the center on their days. Now there are 25 families sharing the nursery -- but it still doesn't work for everybody. One of the founders eventually withdrew because of aggressive children; other parents worry because the storefront that they wangled from the university's idiotic bureaucrats is in a dangerous neighborhood. Since no one can agree upon the orthodox methods espoused by recognized educators, the school develops empirically. The results are resilient, with a strong sense of community sharing. The main problem seems to be that not all the parents pull together. Read this before you leap into a similar project -- although, as Harlow proves, there is no substitute for the varied perils of experience.

Pub Date: April 23, 1975

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: Harper & Row

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 1975