Harvard Prof: Skills Every 18 Year Old Needs

Begin with the end in mind

As we prepare our kids for the real world it is great to have some clear goals. A Harvard Prof provides a useful list of skills we should help teens develop before college or university. I think that for Christian students there are a few more that we should add to the list. Take a look at how far along your teen is…

How to Know if Your Teen is Ready for a Smart Phone

What do you think? 

If the dangers of smart phones for your teen’s mental and spiritual health were considered on par with the dangers of driving, getting a phone would require a course, many lessons, a test, and insurance.

Of course, there are less fatalities due to phones than cars but I think we should think twice about when a student gets a phone and how they use it. You’d never hand over the car keys when a child turned 14. And even later when you would let them drive there were be very clear rules. If you or someone you know is think of setting up a teen with a phone consider what Kara Powell from Fuller Youth Institute says about these important guidelines:

The Absolute Best Way To Help Students With Their Sexuality

As youth workers we often think that it’s all about us;  

that we are the primary influencers in our students’ lives.  Lets make no mistake, we have a part to play.

However, when it comes to our student’s sexuality and understanding of sex, we are NOT the best thing.

I was reminded of “the best thing” again this weekend.  I was at a church doing some teaching and they got it. Here’s what the absolute best thing is…

What Every Parent Should Know about Social Media

What’s Going On?!

This week I had the privilege of spending an evening with parents and pastors, presenting what is going on in the world of social media. I wish you could have been there! I guess the next best thing would be receiving my notes from the session so here 4 of the highlights and a link to download my notes.

Overcoming that Overwhelmed Feeling

Feeling Overwhelmed?

I woke up feeling like there was no way I was going to get over this never ending to do list. Most of the items couldn’t be put off. They needed to get done NOW.

I thought of other parents running from high school activities for their teens and hospitals for their parents, all while constantly receiving emails and updates from work.

The work day doesn’t end. The list of projects and demands doesn’t stop. It’s taxing on the mind and the nerves. Stress accumulates and we are expected to be patient and loving with the people closest to us. That can be asking a lot.

I don’t know about you, but here are a few ways that I have learned to deal with this pressure..

How to Set the Right Consequences

Setting the right consequences…

is complicated but extremely important. I have to admit that I have made mistakes in this area but I always  want to keep trying to get it right. 
Consider these situations…

Karl (16) drove drunk through the garage door

  1. does he lose all car privileges
  2. does he pay for repairs to the car and the door
  3. is he grounded for a month
  4. all of the above

Karli (16) is texting her boyfriend at 3 AM.
Which is the right response?

  1. she loses her phone for a week
  2. her smart phone plan is ended immediately
  3. she loses the privilege of having the phone in her room after bed time

Here is what the parenting experts and counselors suggest…

6 Strategies to Get Screen Time Under Control

Netflix is playing…

and your teen keeps looking at their smart phone. It’s called media-multitasking but most parents call it annoying. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, 8-18 year olds devote 53 hours per week to this pursuit. You are right to be concerned about what this will do to their physical and mental health. Here are 6 strategies to get screen time under control…