Monday, September 29, 2008

Parenting Resources

We went to a lake/park this weekend and enjoyed the beauty. You can't tell it in this picture, but the leaves are just starting to change here.

I hope you all had a great weekend and a good Sunday in church. We are starting a parenting class on Sunday nights. Dave and I are thrilled about this because we need all the help we can get.

The class is based on the book Shepherding a Child's Heart by Tedd Tripp. We have read it before, but are now required to read and answer questions. I know this will help us digest all of the info. The first lesson was about focusing on the heart of your child and not just trying to fix the behaviour. Dr. Tripp used all sorts of examples on how we do this, like giving money or stickers for good behaviour. OOPS :)

We have a sticker chart going on right now at our house. I guess when we read the book a little more, we will decide if we need to take the chart down. I still think rewards are OK to an extent, as long as the child seems to understand why we obey and do our best, and that the stickers are not why we do it. Hmmmm, yes, I am sure my 2 year old obeys just out of love for God, and not just for a sticker :) And I am SURE she goes in the potty just because she wants to do right (not for the candy)

Anyway. You can see that the book requires you to think and rethink why you parent the way you do.

I have been thinking about books and resources for parenting and decided to list my favorites.

My parents read this to me when I was little. The pictures are gorgeous. All of my kids like to look through this "Bible." Our 2 year old has learned so much from this book. When she sees the picture of baby Jesus, she says that Mary and Joseph went on vacation and then they had baby Jesus (maybe we said they went on a trip? With a donkey?)

I still use this What to Expect the First Year book. It lists the common childhood sicknesses and ailments- very handy.
We LOVE Highlights! Thanks to Gigi for ordering 2 subscriptions for us; regular Highlights for the 7 year old, and High Five for the 5 year old. SO many cute stories, poems, comics, pictures, art ideas, recipe ideas, pictures and facts about animals, and some Spanish lessons.

Couldn't live without Family Fun. So many great ideas in every issue.

So absolutely practical, you know it is written by a mom! I need to reread this one.

This book is SO helpful to parents of little ones. Like the idea of establishing "room time" with your kids. I could not live without room time. This means that at a very young age (can't remember...under a year?), you put the baby in a playpen and get them used to playing by themselves. Then when they are old enough you put them in their room with a gate across the door. They start off playing by themselves for 15 minutes. You work on adding time until they are able to play by themselves for 45 min. or so. I think my kids probably did an average of 30 minutes. But the benefits for you and the kid are amazing. They learn independence, and how to focus (on toys and books, without you there to guide their every step). And as a parent- you fly around the house getting as much done as you can :) Priceless (or you just sit down for some peace and quiet for a few minutes, which is just as needful).

So tell me, what are your favorite resources that we are missing out on???


Jennifer Anderson said...

Hi Sara! I think that you listed most of my favorites already, but Ginger Plowman has another one that I really like too called "Wise Words for Moms." It is a booklet about the size of a calendar with helpful scriptures for dealing with typical discipline issues for children. It has the "don't do this" verse and the "do this instead" verse right together. Very handy and helpful! We need all the help we can get too!

Victorious1 said...

I have so many favorites, but - these are the ones that really, really made a difference:

The Five Love Languages of Children, by Gary Chapman & Ross Campbell

Romancing Your Child's Heart, by Monte Swan

Shepherding a Child's Heart, by Tedd Tripp

The Key to Your Child's Heart, by Gary Smalley

The Language of Love, by Gary Smalley & John Trent

The New Birth Order Book, by Kevin Leman

Nurturing the Leader Within Your Child, by Tim Elmore and John Maxwell

Better Late Than Early, by Raymond & Dorothy Moore

Running With The Giants, Old Testament Heroes, by John C. Maxwell

I re-read these over and over. Wouldn't you think I would "get it" one of these days? (Ha-ha...)

Each child is so different,


ko said...

so cool! :) I bet that is a great study! :) Pet duty is great for teaching responsibility! It has helped out so much with Rebecca, she is totally responsible for pets ! I think it has helped her so much!
Love ya


That really is a great book. Oz and I are always discussing the importance of the heart. I want my kids to obey because it is what God wants not because they are afraid of getting in trouble.
I am doing a bible study now on "The bathtub is overflowing but I feel drained" great book for moms! Keep up the great work with you kids!

Anonymous said...

I recently read "Shepherding a Child's Heart" and wish I had read it earlier in my parenting journey. I'm not sure if it's that book or another one that said kids should be rewarded with stickers, etc., for skills learned (such as potty skills) rather than good behavior.

Some of my favorite parenting authors include Raymond and Dorothy Moore and Michael and Debi Pearl. I've also read the Ezzos, who also recommend room time for the kids starting with the play pen, etc. It's nice when kids can play by themselves.

Stephanie said...

I have a 6 month old so parenting is fairly new to me. Thanks for some great suggestions on books to read. I really like the playpen idea. I believe that by Learning to play by yourself only enhances your imagination and creativity. Great tip!

Sarah said...

I have been wanting to start a Bible study with several other couples, going through that book. I have read part of it, and even own the workbook, but haven't ever finished it!

We started a new devotional, now that our kids have gone through "The Bible in Pictures for Little Eyes" several times. It is called "Day to Day Bible" by Eira Reeves and is great for the ages of our girls. I love that it goes into more stories than the "typical" ones that are always told.

I love all of the Usborne craft books--they are geared toward particular topics, and have lots of fun ideas.

I am not going to tell you the name of a new resource that I am enjoying. Because I am going to post about it this week and I don't want to give away my post. :-)

Thanks for sharing these! I love reading what has worked for other parents.

Chrissie Grace said...

We are taking a class at our church right now called "Growing Kids God's Way". It's by the Ezzo's. We have gotten so much out of it.
I also love the books by Stormie Omartian. She has some on praying for your kids.
Also, I mentioned you again on my blog tonite. Check it out when you get a chance:)

gypsy@Hebrews11:13 said...

I LOVE this post- anything with books, of course! I'm going to try some of your list. I would add "Creative Correction" by Lisa Welchel and "Disciplines of a Godly Family" by Hughes.

Wendy said...

Hey Sara - I love the fall pics and wish I were there to see the leaves turn! Also love your book ideas--I just knew you would have Family Fun b/c I was looking through it on my vacation thinking-- Sara would love all of this fun colorful stuff. :)

Donette said...

I'm all for the Sheparding book. It rocked our world, and we read it before we had kids! It should be read again and again, because we tend to forget and start to just focus on behavior from time to time. It's hard when you have a 4 and 2 year old. Not a ton of heart talks going on with her at least!

I COULDN'T SURVIVE without quiet room time. I didn't start until Elijah quit napping, because his naps were so long already, but now it is a staple. He wasn't a great "player" to begin with, and the time alone has really helped develop his imagination.

Candace said...

Great resources Sara! Here are some of my favorites:

Age of Opportunity: A Biblical Guide to Parenting Teens by Paul David Tripp (Tedd Tripp's brother)

Teach them Diligently: How to Use the Scriptures in Child Training by Lou Priolo (also a NANC counselor)

The Heart of Anger by Lou Priolo

The Metcalf family said...

The Bible for Little Eyes is what we use for family devotions each night before bed...I grew up reading that one with my parents too! :)

My favorite kids' series books are the "I have a question about God" books. There are different topics and they are short stories about a little boy, Topher, and his curiosity. We used to use them in our junior church program. Each chapter is a different topic like, "Does God have a wife?" and things like that. I'm not sure who the author is, but I'll find out for you. :)

carissa... brown eyed fox said...

thanks so much Sara... those look like ready good books!

we work on rewards too... i though find myself sometimes focusing on what they are doing wrong... oops... these would be a super reminder!

*Star*Spangled*Eyes* said...

I absolutely LOVE that children's Bible story book. My grandparents would read that to me when I was 4. The pictures are amazing, I agree with you there.

Gretchen said...

So i got on here to tell you about "Wise Words for Moms" by Ginger Plowman, but I see your first commenter did so already. It is a little chart that helps moms apply scripture to the sins of their children (which is Shepherding their hearts, right?). I keep tons of them on hand at L-way. It's only 4 bucks!

Love that Ginger Plowman! New book "No Whining"!

Marit said...

Hey, You will so enjoy your study through Shepherding a Child's Heart. Brad is teaching it in our sunday school class of young"er" parents. It is such a refresher for us and convicting to us to keep the Lord first in ALL things in our family. I love your blog!!!! I want a coffee print for my kitchen. Know anyone who has a fantastic one? :) I love yours.