Archive | Discipline

11 Tips for Teaching Kids to Make Great Choices

11 Tips for Teaching Kids to Make Great Choices - Parenting Like HannahIf you think about it, Christianity is about choices. When God gave us freedom to make choices, He also gave us the freedom to make good choices and bad choices. Sadly, most of us make more bad choices than good ones. It’s the reason Jesus had to die on the cross – for those bad choices that are sins.

Sins are bad choices that can eventually separate your kids from God and prevent them from entering Heaven one day. Your primary goal as a Christian parent is to do whatever you can so your kids make the choices that will lead them to living a Christian life and spending eternity in Heaven.

Unfortunately, like most things in parenting, children are often left to figure out how to make choices on their own. Nobody takes the time and effort to teach them how to make a good, godly choice. The results of this lack of instruction means your kids will be making a lot of unnecessary bad choices – in large part because they are experimenting with the process of making a choice. For many young people, this lack of training means they often default to choices that “feel good or right”. Feelings are often the worst thing to trust when making a choice in life – what we want isn’t always what is best for us.

The good news is the process for teaching kids how to make good choices isn’t really that difficult. The down side is that it can take you quite a bit of time to guide them through this process before it becomes a habit for them at decision making time.

So what do you need to do to teach your kids how to make good choices and make them more consistently? Here are a few of my favorites:

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7 Tips for Raising Responsible Kids

7 Tips for Raising Responsible Kids - Parenting Like HannahHow many times has your child begged for a special gift only to later break or lose it from carelessness? How many times a day do you have to remind your kids to do something you asked them to do or even complete regular chores? How many times have your kids promised to do something and then didn’t keep their promise?

Responsibility is a tough Christian life skill to teach your kids. It’s one of those where you often feel you have taken one step forward and three steps back. Just when your kids seem to have mastered one area of responsibility, you realize they aren’t being very responsible in another area of their lives.

You want your kids to be more responsible, but how do you teach them in such a way that they actually become responsible consistently across every part of their lives? There are probably a lot of things you can do, but these seven tips will give you a great start.

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Teaching Kids How to Resolve Conflict in Godly Ways

Teaching Kids How to Resolve Conflict in Godly Ways - Parenting Like HannahNot many parenting experts pass my litmus test for a true parenting expert. I frequently watch the morning shows and read women’s magazines to see what secular parenting experts are telling people to do. Often, the secular advice is the same advice a Christian parenting expert would give. Other times, I find myself rolling my eyes at their “expert” advice. (Don’t get me wrong. Not all Christian parenting experts are wise either!)

So what parenting topic helps me separate valuable resources for you from not so valuable? It’s how they suggest you should handle things when your kids start fighting with their friends or each other. If an “expert” counsels you to “let them work it out for themselves”, I know he/she hasn’t done his/her homework in parenting.

Why? Because that is absolutely some of the worst parenting advice you will ever hear. Think about it. Your beautiful, wonderful, normally perfect four year old son and six year old daughter are having a major disagreement. Left to their own devices, they will indeed “work it out”. Unfortunately, their ideas for resolving conflict often involve hitting, pinching, screaming, name calling and other not so wonderful tactics.

This is why we have so many issues in our society with conflicts rising to the level of violence, road rage, verbal melt downs, screaming, cursing and more. No one ever taught any of us how to resolve conflict in  godly ways. They let us “figure it out for ourselves” as little kids and we still act like those little kids when there is any kind of conflict.

So what do you need to do the next time your kids start fighting?

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Fun Ways to Teach Kids Obedience

Fun Ways to Teach Kids Obedience - Parenting Like HannahLet’s face it. Obedience isn’t always fun. For kids, it often means you don’t get to do what you wanted to do because your parents has insisted you obey a command to stop. If we are really honest, teaching your kids to obey isn’t always a ton of fun either. Especially when they are young, it can seem like a constant round of saying “No” and giving out consequences to a chorus of tears and protests.

Surprisingly, there are some fun things you can do with your kids that will also reinforce obedience. If you pair the following games and activities with a Bible story, it will add more depth to the experience. Older kids especially need to start making the connection between your rules and God’s.

There are many things you can do with kids to underscore the importance of obedience, but here are a few of my favorites:

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Teaching Christian Kids Logical Fallacies (Made Easy!)

Teaching Christian Kids Logical Fallacies (Made Easy!) - Parenting Like HannahIn Why Christian Kids and Teens Must Learn About Logical Fallacies, I shared how learning about logical fallacies can help protect your kids from false teachers and teachings in the Church. You may have tried to find more information about logical fallacies only to read pages full of Latin terms and pretentious explanations. It probably feels like you are missing a piece to your child’s faith puzzle.

I’m no expert on the subject, but below I have given the most common logical fallacies easier names to remember and hopefully definitions a bit easier to understand. I have also given examples of the types of ways they may be used in the context of Christianity. (Any resemblance to any actual teaching is purely accidental.)

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Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. (Deuteronomy 11:18-19 NIV)