The leader of Trail Life USA has released a new e-book outlining the unique learning and development needs of young males.
Mark Hancock, author of Let Boys Be Boys, argues that those in leadership roles over boys – whether it be in schools, home schools, churches, or youth organizations – must recognize and affirm boys' unique strengths and challenges.
"For some time there has been a cultural leaning against boys – and it's really because we've favored girls; and certainly girls have benefited from that and they deserve the attention that's been turned to them," says Hancock, CEO of Trail Life USA. "But somehow in the process – and we recognize it's not a zero-sum game – we've forgotten about boys."
Pointing to schools as an example, Hancock contends that today's educational institutions are designed to appeal to the type of learning that girls do. "It's a situation where children are told to sit still, be quiet, and pay attention – but that type of environment just does not really work as well with boys," he explains.
According to Hancock, the contemporary culture has "seemingly declared war on boyhood." But he says boyhood is not some sort of "social disease" that needs to be eradicated.
"It may be politically incorrect, it may be hard for us to swallow, but there is a difference between boys and girls – and that's just the truth," he tells OneNewsNow.
Trail Life USA is a Christian outdoor adventure, character, and leadership program for boys and young men in grades K-12. Chartered through churches in 49 states, Trail Life centers on outdoor experiences and biblical values that build a young man's skills and allow him to grow on a personal level and as a role model and leader for his peers.
"Trail Life USA has grown just steadily over the years," Hancock cheers. "We have, I believe, around 780 troops in 50 states right now and we have over 25,000 members who are active in Trail Life USA."
Hancock, an experienced youth pastor and counselor, is also the author of 5 Critical Needs of Boys.