As parents we want to raise our children the best we can right? But what does this “best” look like? For me this is what it looks like!
Here are 8 things that I think are so important for the health and development of our kids:
1. A loving Covenant relationship with Parents
“Covenant” meaning everything you do and say you do and say with your children in mind. The things you do or don’t do affect and mold them therefore make a covenant that you will always love them with purpose and intention.
Parents who love their children with intention will be more effective in their parenting. Utilize every love language when loving your children. The languages being, “Touch, Acts of service, Words of affirmation, Quality time and Gifts (Gary Chapman- Five Love languages).
Water is so important! A good way to know how much water should be consumed is by cutting their weight in half and put it into ounces. Example is a child weighs 30 pounds he/she should be getting at least 15 ounces a day. More if they are active which most kids should be.
3. Healthy Foods
Eating healthy foods is important especially at an early age because this is setting the tone for the rest of their lives. Get your kids to be comfortable around healthy foods. Get them involved in the preparation of the food with you. Yes, this might make you take a little longer but you are instilling important life lessons for you kids. It’s a great investment! Teach and train them which food It’s good for them and why. Make it fun for them!
The parents must example a healthy lifestyle too. You will train them intentionally or unintentionally, because they are always watching you. Whether you are purposely teaching them or not, they are learning from their examples, YOU.
If they are babies still and crawling, that crawling movement is important for their learning development. It causes the brain to work fully, using both hemispheres of the brain getting them to communicate together. I know we are tempted to just hold them or put them in their chairs all the time but please don’t do that! Put them on the floor and if they freak out get down on the floor with them & they will get use to it don’t worry.
Exercise helps bring oxygen to the brain. It does a lot for the brain even chemically. Do not allow your children to just sit in front of the T.V. or computer get them to move.
God created the sun and we are to be in it. We need it vitamin D. Sunshine produces better sleep, better bones, and better mood and is great for the body. Teach them to listen to their bodies. Teach them to get out of the sun when they feel their skin starting to burn. Teach them how important sunshine is for our lives.
Sleep is so important for their growth. Rest creates better brain function and positive behavior. If your children resist going to bed you can make it a “time of connection”. Make it family time so it’s not like a punishment. I have noticed that once we settle in and relax my kids will actually share so much at that time of night when they are about to go to sleep, utilize it. If going to bed meant a time of connection with you they will be more excited to go to bed!
They need to know how to play! Most of the time it’s pretty natural of course but empower them in their playtime. They could have fun doing anything.
They love to do whatever we their parents are doing. Many times we communicate to them that some things are fun and others are “a drag”, “chore” or even a “punishment”. This is because we present them that way. Invite them to do things with us and teach them how to have fun doing it. This will set them up for success.
We can’t be too busy to do this; it’s a priority for us as their parents. Our job is to give them skills that will set them up to be independent, able to do things on their own without you telling them. That way by the time they are 18 years old the responsibility of life is nothing new to them rather something they have been intentionally trained to be able to handle and succeed in.
When we don’t give them these skills they get into 4th or 5th grade and begin to get projects and papers for homework, we get so surprised if they have trouble being organized, remembering things they need to do, finishing their projects & papers. We punish them and give them a nice speech about how they need to shape up. But the training all starts at home. The school education is to be a supplement not the primary source. It’s the parent’s jobs to teach and train their children.
Many stay inside in the air conditioned air or heating & don’t get fresh air. They get recycled, dead, stale air. We all need fresh air. Open a window and/or take a walk outside. Open window by bed when you’re sleeping. Fresh air is good for us.
These are the 8 things that I think are important when it comes to the health and development of our children. Try them out with intention for a month and watch what it produces in the life of your child.