Young Trees: 4th and 5th Grade
Like a gardener who is tending their gardening plot Christian parents can not just let their kids grow up without guidance, pruning, watering, tending, and fertilizer. We are striving to raise the next generation of believers, our foundation is God’s word. We encourage you to use these gardening tips in parenting your kids.
“I love the analogy of life as a garden, whether you love to garden or not, most people love to be in one. Sometimes they are organized, orderly, and monochrome, sometimes free flowing, vivacious and colorful. But in all cases, they symbolize life and growth.”
This section is for you as a parent.
For our single parents, what adults are you connecting with, who knows what is happening in your life? How are you prioritizing time with your friends and community? Are you making time for one another, putting one another before your child(ren)?
These questions stir up thoughts in your heart. These questions are meant as a help, when we are busy with helping our kids grow we often overlook ourselves or our spouse.
Deuteronomy 6:6 calls us as parents to model our faith to our children by keeping God’s word in our hearts.
Spent time in the Word. Read for your understanding and growth, only through an overflow can we be effective in our families.
We want this resource to be an encouragement to you, it is not a condemnation but an opportunity for growth. How are you growing in the Lord?
How are you pursuing Christ in the midst of the business of life with your child(ren)?
It is often helpful to think beyond that of your household. Are you taking the time/space to allow others into your life? Are there ways you can serve someone in your community and world? It may not look like how you have served others in the past but when you serve others you it helps you remember the wider world the Lord has placed you in.
North Star Catechism around the table at meal time
God Made Boys and Girls by Marty Machowsk
The Garden and the Cross by Carl Laferton
The Family Discipleship Podcast
The Parent Cue (free and paid resource)
the Bible Project
Habits. You now have an almost-teenager, and every day could feel like an emotional rollercoaster. It is essential to have not only your personal habits that point you to Christ but also family habits that help smooth out those emotional moments. What habit/family rhythms will help to establish stability. As your child(ren) gets older, lives get busier and family habits will help to ground your preteen. Make family meals a priority, think about specific questions to ask each day. Make your dinner table a technology free zone, for everyone in the family. Incorporate family worship into the family meal/technology free time. Make space in your family’s day.
Celebration. As your child(ren) gets older sometimes the every day seems less celebratory. Math, English and science homework can take president over the celebrations of the everyday. In the chaos of life, remember to take time to celebrate the everyday happenings. Celebrate a good grade, a spelling test, a good decision. Celebrate the moments when you see your child(ren) flourish in moments of struggle, and celebrate in the struggle the hope of relief. Celebrate their first time going to overnight camp, or when they find out where their middle school locker is going to be.
Milestones. Child(ren) at this age are going through a lot of changes. Their hearts, minds and bodies are growing. We live in a culture where our biblical understand of sexual ethic is not the same as the worlds. Take time to talk to your son/daughter about what we may see as “grown up” topics. It is important to talk more regularly about what they are already hearing about on TV or from their peers. You want them to come to you with questions, not rely on Google. Parents of daughters, think about and have conversations about your daughter starting her menstrual cycle. This is such a pivotal time in the lives of young ladies. Take your daughter away for the weekend, talk to her about what is happening. Gather a small group of moms and daughters and have these conversations together. If you are a single dad, what women in your daughters life can stand in the gap with you to help with these conversations. There will be embarrassing moments, but embrace them as milestones.