Disclaimer: This book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own. This post also contains affiliate links.
I had a pretty good classical education in high school & was blessed to have great English teachers. As much as I loved those classes, I haven’t been able to read many classics in regular life. When Mary at St. Benedict Press suggested If Aristotle’s Kid Had an iPod for a review, I decided to give it a go. Even if I didn’t read Aristotle, I could get an idea of his work. Besides which, balancing technology for our children is a battle we fight daily. It’s funny that we own a technology company & limit our children’s use of it.
If Aristotle’s Kid Had an iPod isn’t just about technology, though that’s a piece of it. Mostly, the book is about people. Technology is only mentioned insofar as technology impedes social skills with actual people. This book is divided into 3 main parts. The first discusses virtue and covers things like human nature, types of personalities, four moral characters & training in virtue. My favorite by far is the section on the four moral characters which talks about King David, Frodo, Socrates & Darth Vader. I know, right?
The second section talks about friendship. Gallagher goes into the three types of friendship as well as how technology influences them (and where the title comes from). The third & final section is about happiness where pleasure, virtue & perseverance are discussed.
I really enjoyed If Aristotle’s Kid Had an iPod and learned a lot from it. Not only about myself & people in general (which is a hobby of mine), but it also gave me ideas about how to train/teach my children. I love books that give me something I can do. In the appendix is a virtue assessment that illustrates the virtues as well as when your child is at one of the extremes or right in the sweet spot. The appendix also includes ways you might guide a child to moderation of a virtue in many different scenarios. I loved those, too.
I will definitely be keeping this one handy & even retreading it as my children get older. I recommend it to anyone with children, even (or perhaps especially) older children. If you are looking for an enjoyable, practical introduction to virtue, If Aristotle’s Kid Had an iPod is a great choice.