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Tammy Hoskins

How To Cultivate Kids Who Show Respect

In our postmodern world, absolutes are conditional at best. The grey areas have expanded so far that it’s hard to even find black or white anymore. So how do we train our children to understand and exercise righteous standards in their daily lives? Standards like respect.

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My parents taught me that respect was an absolute not to be compromised. Did you catch that? My parents taught me—and as parents today, we must continue to be intentional in teaching our children. It’s our responsibility and Scripture holds us accountable to do it.

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Jesus called this the most important commandment and followed that by saying that loving our neighbors was the next greatest! Love flows from respect. If we love the Lord God with all our hearts and souls and strength, then we’ll also love our neighbors as ourselves (Mark 12:31).

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You model respect for your children when you hold the door for the person coming behind you, when you call your elderly neighbor to check on them because you haven’t seen them that day, and when you explain that the teacher was right to move their color card for speaking out of turn or drifting away from the line walking from their class to the playground.

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Respect isn’t taught unless you demonstrate it. Children need to see it in action. The old saying that “you’ve got to walk what you talk” is central to instilling respect in this generation. Your children will replicate your actions and behaviors, and even your attitudes. Be mindful that little eyes are watching, little ears are hearing, and little feet are walking the path you lead them on every day.

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Talk about respect with your family. Tie it as a symbol on your hands. Write it on your doorframes (maybe these are digital these days instead of physical?). Model respect so your children remember the time you stopped to thank a soldier or to put the grocery cart where it belongs (not just loose in the parking lot) or to ask your spouse what help they need today. Your children are watching and learning from you. Let’s live out Scriptural principles in our lives that can be a firm foundation for them as they grow into adults!

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4 Ways to Get YOU Ready for Back to School

4 Ways to Get YOU Ready for Back to School | Undeterred.netBack to school! A phrase that instantly strikes fear and a simultaneous “AMEN” from all parents—especially moms. I know because we have two boys: one entering first grade and the other starting middle school. This is the first time when classroom preview day means I’ll participate in orientations, visit with teachers, drop off supplies, and hold my emotions together for an ENTIRE day.

The great thing is that I’m also an educator, so I’ve been on both sides of this scenario. Here are a few tips to guide you in preparing for the school year ahead. Remember, it’s a marathon, not a race!

Guard your heart. Pray with your child every morning. It aligns their spirit with the Father’s and models for your young one how to seek first (Matthew 6:33). Also, pray over your child’s teacher(s) and classmates. Share with the teacher that you want to support the class by praying throughout the year. This will make a genuine connection and help guard your heart when your child tells you that her teacher corrected her. The mama bear in you might want to tell that teacher a thing or two, but the sibling in Christ you are to that teacher should prompt you to learn more about the situation. Then you can guide your child in growing through the experience of being disciplined in love.

  1. Pace yourself! Waiting until the week before school will leave you scrambling to find the exact 10-pack washable Crayola markers listed on the supply list. Online shopping is always a great option if you start early. If your child likes being involved in selecting the items, do this together. Or if you prefer to shop without your student, consider packing all the supplies into their backpack and presenting it to them all ready to go! He’ll likely be SO excited about the goodies inside that he won’t even care he didn’t help pick it out.
  1. Look straight ahead. Don’t get distracted. Your child grows and learns in a unique way like no other child. Glean wisdom from how others prepare, but rest assured that you know your child best. If wearing a uniform is a new challenge, practice the routine before the first day of school. Label everything because that new lunch box and water bottle is new to your child, too, and she might not remember which one is hers in the lunchroom rush with all the other firsts of this new world!
  1. Be prepared. There will be things that are outside your control—like the bus being 20 minutes late the first few days. But by having as much organized as possible ahead of time, you will grant yourself the grace and space to deal with the unexpected.

4 Ways to Get YOU Ready for Back to School | Undeterred.net

Back to school prep is a given part of parenthood and requires exercising the fruits of the Spirit, but the reward is great. Children who see you investing in the simplest of things—like which pencils have the cool colored erasers—can begin to understand the care and concern of our Father who is so involved in all the details of life and learning!

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