Uncomfortable Questions You Need to Ask Your Kids

I love to hike. But occasionally I notice some sudden changes. The path does not look right, markings are no longer visible, etc. It is in those times that I need to assess where I am to make sure I did not get off the trail. When children get off the trail of proper development and growth it is often marked with sudden changes. Sudden changes or major steps backwards in our child’s development can be alarming. Continue reading Uncomfortable Questions You Need to Ask Your Kids

Why They Won’t Listen

Leon and Legend (Not their real names.)

Last week I enjoyed helping Delaware County Christian School (DCCS.org) with their LOVE, American Experience camp for 30 Chinese middle school students. My wife and I hosted 3 girls and I was with the group for 3 and a half days taking pictures. In that time many of the kids in this group touched my heart.

I had an incident with two boys. One was 13 year old Leon, a pleasant, heavyset child. He seemed to be misplaced. Not being mature enough to hang out with the older boys who were more his size he hung out with the younger boys and stuck out physically. One of those younger boys was 12 year old Legend, tall, very thin and athletically gifted. Continue reading Why They Won’t Listen

Are You Preparing Your Son?

Teaching a father/son class on growing from a boy to a man I described sexual intercourse to 10 year old boys. One boy raised his hand and to the horror of the Dads asked, “how will we remember to do this with our wives?” Not much later our boys no longer wonder and can’t seem to get sexual matters off their minds. We need to prepare our boys.

Yesterday I spent the day with a Middle School English Immersion camp with 30 kids from China. It was enjoyable. But being with many boys who are in the process of becoming a man I was reminded how important it is that we prepare our boys for what is coming. Continue reading Are You Preparing Your Son?

Prepare and Safeguard from Bullies

Parents, this was posted some time ago on Cyber Safety Seminar website. Recently Cecil the Lion has stirred up some very ugly behavior from adults. I got to thinking how our children must perceive this ugly behavior. Many “good” people are saying very nasty things, hoping harm on another and feeling justified making threats and more. All of this behavior, if it were occurring in children would clearly be called “bullying.”

Below you will see I list several kinds of bullies. The Retaliative Bully often will justify their bully actions as “justified” because they believe they are righting some wrong. Those wishing harm on others because of some “wrong” action, are sending a clear message to their children. But not a message of “righting a wrong” as much as a “bullying is OK.”

Here is the updated previous post: Continue reading Prepare and Safeguard from Bullies

Is Kindergarten Really a Prison for Some Kids?

DSC_0407 The  Washington Post ran an article on July 13 entitled “And Now Mandatory Summer School for Some Kindergarteners” (Washington Post Article Link)

It begins with

“It isn’t enough, apparently, that many kindergartners today are subjected to test after test, homework, little or no play, little or no rest time, and sometimes, no snack. Now, a Florida schools superintendent is recommending a new treat for kindergartners who are not reading as well as adults want them to be (even if they aren’t developmentally ready to): summer school. Where they can do even more academic work and get less time to be kids and play.”

It went on to say Continue reading Is Kindergarten Really a Prison for Some Kids?

The Problem With Pinterest

Don’t laugh. Way before there was an internet, let alone Pinterest, I was one of “those” people who kept multiple files of great ideas I wanted to try. Maybe it was the educator in me. Maybe it was because I was so hyper. I had folders for fun wood projects, scouts, toys to build for my kids, recipes, lawn ideas, etc. So when Pinterest came along I was excited because now I could keep those great ideas online. Unfortunately, my excitement has turned to dismay. Not because of Pinterest but because of how people have become Pinterest Zombies. I compare them to the walking dead because simple, reasonable ideas are no longer alive in their soul. Continue reading The Problem With Pinterest

Your 4 Principles Seem to Contradict One Request Parenting

Are the 4 Principles of Discipleship outlined in your 4 Common Traits of the Most Successful Parents in opposition to being a “Single Request Parent.”

Actually, no. I strongly believe that we should never beg our children to obey feeling trapped into following some cumbersome set of steps to get our child to obey what they have already been taught, coached and warned about. Continue reading Your 4 Principles Seem to Contradict One Request Parenting

Successful Parents Are True To Their Word

This is the fifth and final installment of the series highlighting the discipleship traits of the most successful parents I know.
Principle #4 – Successful parents, with only rare exceptions, with sadness of heart and out of a deep love followed through on an earned punishment. Then they returned to Principle #3 in restoring.

family-42-smallThe most successful parents I have known, are true to their word. If they have taught, coached, gave grace by reteaching and warning then the vast majority of work has been completed. Many children will respond 99.9% of the time with just the first three principles. You will only get to #4 on rare occasions. But some children, those strong willed ones, will force you to get to #4 on many, many occasions. The best parents I know, with sadness of heart and out of a deep love for their children will allow their child to suffer the consequences of their actions. Then they give some love and go back to principle #3, and reteach and warn.

Some parents fear this step because they rightfully know that their children will not like this step. Continue reading Successful Parents Are True To Their Word

Successful Parents Show Grace

This is the fourth in a series on what I have observed in the most successful parents I know. Here is characteristic #3. The series compares the 4 characteristics with 4 principles found in II Timothy 3: 16-17.
Principle #3 – Successful parents showed an extra measure of grace by first warning of a coming punishment. They typically did this when a problem of disobedience appeared to become a pattern and with a desire to “restore” their child. Successful parents re-taught what was expected, then gave a warning of what punishment or consequence would occur with any further disobedience. 

Wikipedia says of God’s grace “In Western Christian theology, grace has been defined, not as a created substance of any kind, but as “the love and mercy given to us by God because God desires us to have it, not because of anything we have done to earn it”, “the condescension or benevolence shown by God toward the human race”. Continue reading Successful Parents Show Grace

Successful Parents Are Hands On

This is the third part in a series of characteristics I have seen in very successful parents. The series compares the 4 characteristics with 4 principles found in II Timothy 3: 16-17.
Principle #2 – Successful parents follow up their teaching with hands on training to clearly expose which actions are right and which are wrong.

After recognizing that great parents are constantly teaching, I quickly realized that teaching was not enough. There were wonderful teaching parents who still consistently had problems with their children. In fact, occasionally I observed children who mocked their parents’ teaching. Continue reading Successful Parents Are Hands On