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Intelligent Children - Issue 296
April 26, 2013
Hi there! ....

This week just gone has had its busy times as well as its slower times. Naomi and Daniel went to youth camp and after I put them on the bus I had coffee with a few other mums. That was nice. It is not often that I get to take time out at that time of the morning! We had friends staying for 5 days. We had good conversation and lots of laughs and look forward to our next time together - hopefully at their place! Friday was Daniel’s birthday – he turned 14 and today we have a party happening. It is good to spend our ‘study break’ with friends this way.

Live life with your kids!

If you are a new Australian reader I would appreciate you reading this special request.

Intelligent Children

As parents we are to teach and train the whole child – the spiritual, emotional, moral, physical, and intellectual. Sometimes though, when we see a significant giftedness in one area we let the other areas lapse. Though I believe we should recognise strengths in our children we need to keep a balance in our training and expectations.

For example, our son Joshua could be the stereotypical distracted professor – off in his own world thinking about things that other people just don’t. But people generally don’t think that of him when they meet him. He is interested in meeting people, talking to them, and helping them feel comfortable.

When he was about 6 it was suggested to me that if he was in school he would have been put in ‘gifted classes’. I didn’t really take much notice because I don’t know that I have a lot of time for the ‘gifted’ classes – not unless the whole child issues are being addressed as well. I have seen gifted children not fit in with either peers or adults and that is sad. So we continued on our way, homeschooling as we were, giving him what he needed – not because he was ‘gifted’ but because he was keen to learn.

Around the same time, Naomi (our third child) was a baby, and I remember Josh sitting in the lounge reading a book, with Naomi sitting on the floor crying her little heart out. And Joshua not doing a thing about it! Because he was characterised by being a very caring big brother I was bamboozled by this I but quickly realised that Josh simply hadn’t heard her – he was so absorbed in his book that he just didn’t hear. Understandable maybe, but not what I wanted our family to be characterised by!

It was this situation that made me see him for who he was – he was an intelligent kid, who loved knowledge, and his thoughts about what he was learning took him deep into thinking. He blocked everything else out – including people.

One of the strong foundations in our family is that we consider the other person first. And I could see that Joshua was heading to a place where knowledge, thinking and reading was more important.

It was at this point that training Josh took a particular direction. Each of my children have different strengths and weaknesses, and I have to encourage them all to understand, desire and walk in God’s ways – and as they do, their weaknesses have less impact on their life, and on the lives of others. The social arena was where we needed to focus our training for Joshua and our training was strongly focused on loving the other person – being aware of them, thinking about their needs, and getting involved in helping them.

Our mantra for Josh is: God has given you a brain for a purpose – and that purpose involves other people.

Whatever our strengths are we need to use them for God’s purposes. God loves people, and his purposes are centred on people. Jesus command to us was to love God and love other people. This is true for all people – for all kids – regardless of their area of strength.

We have worked on issues like:

  • being aware of people in the room
  • listening not just talking
  • starting a conversation that others can join in
  • giving himself to others who have different interests
  • asking questions of others, learning from others
  • be available to help in practical ways

So do you have a child with a clearly defined strength? It may not be in the intellectual sense; it may be in the arts, in sports, in practical things, and even in spiritual things – are you encouraging them to embrace their strengths for God’s purposes? Are you giving them the tools to be well rounded whole person? Are you helping them to see how their strengths can be used to bless others?

During the week I blog at Live Life with Your Kids! This week I shared:

You may like to read about Family Bible Study which looks at the challenge of studying together as a family with different ages. Check out other homeschool issues over at my website, Lifestyle Homeschool

My Bookshop

Blending Life with Lessons e-book - Does your everyday life challenge your homeschool ideas? This is my journey as I discover that it is possible to disciple my children in today's busy lifestyle.

Heart Focus Parenting book/e-book - A heart focused parent will keep their attention on their child's heart for God, instead of on external behaviours.

Restoring the Heart, Mind and Soul of Christmas Do your Christmas celebrations line up with what you believe? Do your celebrations help your children learn more about Jesus?

This e-book is based on a workshop I held for a couple of years to help families see that Christmas can be a significant tradition in our family life. If we are intentional about how our family celebrates we have the opportunity to use this time to teach our children about Jesus, and his love for each one of us.

My Sitemap is a quick reference to all you will find on Lifestyle-Homeschool. I encourage you to have a browse around!

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Until next week

Belinda Letchford
Living life with her kids in Australia!

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About Live Life with your kids Newsletter

Live life with your Kids newsletter is about being a deliberate parent, about enjoying family life and using the opportunities that happen to teach and train your children in righteousness (right living with God). I hope that you will find regular encouragement as you live life with your kids!

The newsletter will also keep you updated with all additions to Lifestyle-Homeschool

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