Know how to Help your Child Grow with an Intentional Plan

Know where your Child is at…

So you sit down with a notebook or with our Parenting Plan worksheet and you answer a few questions. Make the answers brief, and if you don’t know pause and pray and come back to it.

-1- Love Language  

Do you know how your child feels the most loved? And how well do you think you’ve been speaking love to them (in ways they feel it)?  What can you do to change this? 

Remember this whole process is prep for your parenting – your child never has to see it! Probably best they don’t see it to be honest!!

-2- Their Relationship with God

We cannot make a child respond to God though we can encourage and support them as they get to know Him. At this review time consider how your child is going in developing a relationship with Jesus.  Think about these issues, and take notes.

-3- Their Relationship with their Parents

Is their heart soft towards you?  Are they respectful?  Consider attitude and actions.  What concerns do you have in the ways they respond to you and engage with you.  

We need to consider what they are characterised by or what they do most of the time – not just focus on a one off that was slightly out of the blue.  

-4- Their Relationship with their Siblings

How are they going with each of their sibling relationships?  Anything jump out at you that is just off, that has deteriorated or is a struggle?  Write down where you think they are at, and what you think the struggles are and if any ideas of how you can help them grow and change – write it all down.

-5- Levels of Obedience or Responsibility

Are they obedient or responsible (and there is an age appropriate distinction here)? Are they improving? Or not?

-6- School, Friends, Talents, other Commitments

Take note of any other major concerns you have noticed.

-7- Circumstances

Is there anything upsetting or unsettling happening in their lives at the moment?   

Though this does not excuse behaviour it does help us understand their struggles and approach them with care and consideration.

-8- List 3 top negative behaviours or concerns

After reviewing all of these areas of concern, list the top three that you think are making a significant issue in your child’s life (or in your family life). 

-9- Choose the most important issue 

Look over these top 3 and choose one.  This is the one that you will continue to base your Intentional Parenting Plan on.  

Be assured, if those others are really an issue there will be another time to address them – if they are issues of the heart they won’t go away.  

-10- Context and Triggers

Is there a particular context or trigger where your child shows you that this is an issue that needs working on? This helps us get a big picture of where our child is at.  We want to understand our child, not just react to their behaviour.

-11- What is the Heart Issue?

What belief, value or skill do you want to teach so that they know how to make wise choices in this area?

Why is this belief, value or skill important?

These questions help us understand what we want to train – to teach – to put into their heart and help them believe, value, feel and choose.

-12- Teaching Prompts

How am I going to teach this?  What resources, stories, Bible verses, activities do I want to use to teach this to my child?  

What activity in our family life will give me the opportunity to talk about this?  

This may seem like a very teacher-like thing to do – and believe me this is not a homeschool thing – this is a process that is worth doing as a parent.  When we think about the way we can teach our children, and we fill up our own heart with understanding what we believe and value, and think about the words that communicate this to our kids – when we do that before we find our selves face to face with our child – we will be ready.  We will be able to speak into a teachable moment, because the information is a part of our own beliefs and values.  This makes it so much more powerful than reaching for a book and giving our kids a lecture.

So think about how you are going to teach these things to your children in the coming month.

Belinda

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