Archive for May 20th, 2013

Mind Their Manners

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Sometimes I Sleep

A plea for parental courtesy, for everyone’s sake.

A few weeks ago, an elderly man lurched out of our church service in a hurry. The effects of stroke encumber his body, but he moved quickly and was clearly distressed. Four ushers rushed to his side to see what was the matter. Agitated, he repeated himself four or five times before they understood- “The children, yelling in church!” It was true. This gentleman had been seated near a small child who had been yelling (not crying or fussing, just yelling) for quite awhile.  I had trouble hearing the sermon and I was 20 feet away. This gentleman ended up sitting near the nursery and listening to the remainder of the service over the speakers. The yeller stayed in her pew.

When did it become okay for people to inflict their disruptive children on large gatherings of the public? When did parents…

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SRM Kingdom Kidz

How do you think of patience? I think most would agree it’s a nice quality or characteristic to have (and it certainly makes our lives as parents, teachers, and kids leaders far easier when our kids possess it).  But is it really necessary?  Is it absolutely necessary for living a life in Christ and as a follower of Christ?

Let’s look at this from a different perspective.  Have you ever noticed sin never makes you wait?  The promise of gratification from sinful behavior is immediate.  Cheat and you can have a good grade…now.  Intoxication will numb the pain…now.  Lying gets you out of a jam…now.  Gossip makes you look good or “in the know”…now.  David and Bathsheba satisfied David’s lust…now.

Sin promises and delivers fleeting pleasures now (Heb 11:24-26) while blinding us to its ultimate wages (death – Rom 6:23) coming sometime “down the line.”

Those who lack patience will…

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Crescent Number Nine

Its been three weeks since my last post – can you believe it? Things have been so busy here that I have had to sacrifice my blogging time to get everything done. Sometimes I wonder why no one invents a longer day – a couple of extra hours every day would be amazing! Alas, I will have to make do with the number of hours currently available and try to cram everything in! On with the blog…

At nursery we are always trying to come up with new ways of involving parents in their children’s learning, helping them to understand how important they are in their children’s lives. Lots of our parents ask us about reading and about how best to help their children so we decided to have a special ‘Share-A-Story’ session where our families spent time together reading books and enjoying some special time together.


We thought carefully…

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Free Spirit Publishing Blog

By Scott Cooper, author ofSpeak Up and Get Along!

Cooper_Scott_FSP AuthorOne day my eleven-year-old son Jackson walked into our kitchen at the end of a long school day without his usual carefree cheerfulness. He was withdrawn and didn’t want to talk. After some coaxing, my wife finally got to the bottom of things. My son had worn his new red basketball shoes to school and an older boy had come up with his buddies and said, “I’m the only one in this school who has red shoes. If you wear those tomorrow, we’re going to beat you up!”

Fortunately, in this case, school administrators jumped in and took swift disciplinary action. The kid who was bullying was immediately confronted and advised that if it ever happened again he would be out of school. He was told not to talk to my son again about this, and he never did.


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Help Your Child Change a Poor Sleep Pattern

If you have a child who consistently goes to bed late and wakes up tired and unrefreshed, there are some things that you can try to help them change their sleep pattern. It won’t necessarily be easy, as a child who has become habituated to sleeping late can be very resistant to an earlier sleep pattern but it is about habit-changing and persistence and perseverance can help both of you to establish a new routine.


  1. 1

    Stick to a consistent routine. It is tempting to let children stay up later on the weekend but this is where children learn how enjoyable it is to stay up later and it gives them the desire to do so on other nights. When a routine exists that requires your child to be in bed early every night of the week, this provides a sense of consistency that children can easily adapt to. This means keeping a consistent bedtime and waking time.

  2. 2

    Ensure that your child has a comfortable sleep environment. The room should be at a good sleep temperature of around 16ºC (60ºF). If it is not possible to keep the room warm enough, add blankets and a child-safe hot water bottle to warm the bed. Avoid using electric blankets as these are not considered to be safe options for children.[1] If the room is too warm, strip the bed down to a sheet only, leave a glass of water at the bedside table and open the window if possible. It is also important that the room is quiet. This means no noise from TV, talking or other hubbub.

  3. 3

    Keep distractions out of your child’s bedroom. Remove anything that might distract a child such as computers, TV, video games etc. The family room is the place for these highly distracting devices. For teens, this will be more difficult, but you can institute a check at a certain hour to make sure they are not sneaking in extra time. The problem lies in the fact that using computers, playing video games or watching TV winds up our mind and it takes considerable time to unwind after using these devices. A good rule of thumb is to require reading, card playing, writing or drawing on paper etc. type activities to replace electronic activities one hour before bedtime. This becomes “down-time”. To make it fair, this should apply to everyone in the family, regardless of age, to help all get a good night’s sleep!

  4. 4

    Don’t let your child consume products that might keep them lively past bedtime. Ban consumption of soft drinks, coffee, tea, chocolate etc. that contain caffeine several hours before bedtime. Make it a rule that come 6pm, all drinks must be caffeine free. This will be harder on teen children than on younger ones.

  5. 5

    Avoid using bed as a source of punishment for time-outs. Children will associate being sent to bed with bad experiences and this can hamper their desire to go to bed and sleep.

  6. 6

    Get out and exercise. A bike ride or a ball bounce after dinner can do wonders for improving sleep patterns. However, care must be taken not to encourage exercise too close to bedtime or hearts will be racing and sleep will be long in coming.

  7. 7

    Change the whole family’s sleep patterns. If getting up early is an issue for everyone, perhaps it is time the whole family went to bed early. It can be a fun but instructive game for mom and dad to go to bed earlier than their child once in a while. Tell your child you are going to bed and that they had better hurry up and beat you. Turn out all the lights in the rest of the house except for where teeth are being cleaned and the bedrooms. The message soon becomes clear and everyone gets a good night’s sleep! This can be a great way to kickstart a new sleeping routine for the entire household and the kids feel involved as a part of the general shift, rather than being the sole focus.

  8. 8

    Be persistent. Your child will likely argue and whine. Be ready for that and have ears of steel. Repeat the mantra that “your bedtime is now, the TV time is over” or “Goodnight, sleep tight”. Using a mantra every night can help your child settle down, as long as you use it to signal that there’s no discussion to be had.[2] As much as the wheedling gets to you, as a parent, it is your responsibility to stand up to your child’s limit-testing and draw the boundaries clearly.

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