Book Reviews

The Center for the Theology of Childhood of the Godly Play Foundation is interested in the theory, practice, and empirical research concerning children’s religious lives, their spirituality, and the theological implications of what is learned. We are embarking on a project to offer original book reviews of volumes related to the spiritual guidance of children. This project is aimed to serve the international Godly Play community and to draw on it for these reviews, but those generally interested in this field will find them helpful as well.

The Grace of Playing

Courtney T. Goto, The Grace of Playing: Pedagogies for Leaning into God’s New Creation (2016)

Introduction

Courtney T. Goto, The Grace of Playing: Pedagogies for Leaning into God’s New Creation (2016)Professor Goto was educated at Mills College (BA), Harvard University (MTS), and Emory University (PhD).  She is currently Assistant Professor of Religious Education and Co-Director of the Center for Practical Theology at Boston University School of Theology.  She is a third generation Japanese American, United Methodist.

Her book, she writes, “is a conversation written by a Protestant primarily for theorists, students, and practitioners (xix),” but her audience does not need to be so severely limited.  The “practitioners,” however, do need to have a taste for theory.  She also writes that, “I am interested primarily in playing as it relates to adult learning (xviii),” but this book can also be applied to children, because playing is the natural bridge between the generations.  The book sometimes sounds like it is about religious education and other times about experiential therapy, but these activities are not incompatible.    Continue reading