1st Birthday Blessing
Your child’s first birthday will be a once in a lifetime moment. It will be the first, and maybe only time your child is covered head to toe with cake, and it’s okay! Our desire through this Milestone Experience is to make this birthday even more memorable by helping you to give your child a birthday blessing that you will write and share with friends and family at your child’s first birthday party.
Ready, Set, Go!
The year before your preschooler enters kindergarten it’s normal to continually ask, “Is my child ready?” This baby that was completely dependent upon you just a few short years ago to feed, clothe, and bathe is getting ready to venture into a world where he or she will be responsible for doing these things independently. How do you know if your child is ready? How can you prepare your preschooler for this big step?
Explore the Bible
Second graders are reading independently, so this is the perfect time to help them engage in the book that will change their lives: the Bible. Even as adults we can struggle with reading the Bible on a consistent basis. Our lives and the time we spend in the Bible would probably be different if someone had helped us understand when we were younger that the Bible is personal, prepares us for life, and is true.
The Art of Friendship
Fourth grade is the peak year for friendship in elementary school. Your child is beginning to listen to his or her peers more than ever. Many children this age develop an intimate relationship with a best friend. We can be wise in helping our children choose their friends well since friends are the biggest influence in the life of a child afer parents.
Prep for Adolescence
It’s time. You knew it was coming, but you had no idea how fast it would actually get here. We are talking about the day when your sweet baby actually grew up and is now beginning the process of changing into a young adult. Because this is a season of so much change, it seems as if our kids can become unsure of themselves almost overnight. As parents we can’t let them stumble their way through. We have the great privilege of sharing with them who they are at this moment and what they can become in the future. If our students can’t trust us to give them straight answers, who can they trust? It’s time to speak to our 6th graders, but mostly it’s time to listen.
8th Grade Trip
Many parents talk to their kids about sex. The conversation is often filled with “don’t” and “be careful,” but parents frequently miss the opportunity to talk about why these ideas are so important. Isn’t it true that your dreams for your kids are amazing and worth discussing? Isn’t it true that these hopes are probably better than your own personal experiences when it comes to sexuality and intimacy? Have you considered talking with your kids about those dreams to paint a picture of what could be? The goal for this Milestone Experience is to cast a vision for your student of God’s plan of sex for him or her. Your student needs a goal in order to strive for it. With that in mind, the secondary goal is to create healthy habits and guardrails to help your student achieve the goal. You need to paint a picture of the life you dream for your middle schooler and that God dreams for him or her when it comes to sex and intimacy. Hopefully, your dream for your child will become your 8th grader’s dream as well.
This is not about driving. That might surprise you, but it is the truth. This experience with your teenager signifies way more than just driving. There is a shift in your relationship, where your teenager will spend much more time away from you than with you. When your son or daughter drives a car, he or she will experience the first significant amount of freedom. That freedom also represents the first opportunity for you to gauge your student’s moral compass. How will he handle making his own decisions apart from you? Will she be smart? Will he be safe? This Milestone Experience is not about driving; it is about establishing a system for your teenager to both build trust and restore broken trust with you. What your teenager wants more than anything is freedom. What you want more than anything is for your student to be trustworthy. Therefore, if your son or daughter earns your trust, you are unleashed to reward him or her with freedom.
It’s possible to go a little crazy in your parenting during your student’s senior year. The transition from dependence to independence comes to a jarring climax sometime during this year. The reality that the baby you once held will soon live a life fairly separate from yours can be overwhelming. It is normal to feel slightly crazy. First it looks a little like smothering. Then it can revert to parenting like you did when your student was ten. It might have an extra dose of sadness or anger to it. Or it may look like an erratic attempt to cram in every lesson you haven’t had the chance to teach. No matter what, chances are during your student’s senior year, your son or daughter may think you’ve gone a bit loco! The insanity and that unexplained behavior is often rooted in the fear of letting go instead of trusting God to get His work done in your student’s life. If you understand that, you’ll be able to keep these truths in front of your senior as he or she anticipates the thrill of the journey ahead!