family ideas

parenting + family resources

There’s no one way to help your kids grow as Christians. Everyone is different. Every family is different. Here are just a few ideas for you to consider, but definitely don’t try to do everything!

 

If you have good ideas that you’d like to share, contact us!

Look through our Vision for Kids and Teens for key ways you can help your kids grow in their faith. 

 

general (that can be done with any age)

 

  • Download the Parent Cue app. It’s a great resource to get nudges on how you can help disciple your kids.

  • Let your kids see your faith. For example, read your Bible at a time and place where they might notice you. Or serve in our FBC Kids group or in other ways where your kids can see you helping people grow in their faith.

 

Prayer

  • Pray with your kids for people in their lives. Thank God for them and ask God to meet their needs. Tip: invite your kids to pray, but don’t force them to. You can pray out loud to model how to pray. 

  • Pray with your kids at the end of the day and thank God for good things of the day, and lament hard things

  • Check out the book To Light Their Way by Kayla Craig for some good prayers parents can pray

  • Look up the suggested prayer for your kids’ age in the Vision For Kids And Teens, and pray it out loud regularly so that your kids know the prayer by heart

  • Pray with kids at set times during the day, like in the morning or evening, or at meals or while driving. 

  • Go on a prayer walk or prayer bike ride around your neighborhood

Bible

  • Read a chapter of the Bible together regularly: The Jesus Storybook Bible is great for younger kids. You can read through it multiple times while your kids are young so they really get to know the stories. Then graduate to an older children’s Bible or give them a Bible of their own and encourage them to read it

  • Read through The Ology with your kids. It’s a great way to introduce them to different parts of the Christian faith

  • Teach them the names and order of the books of the Bible. Find a “books of the Bible” song you like and sing it with them! 

  • Make up tunes to learn the names of the 12 disciples, 12 tribes of Israel, 10 commandments, or other things you think are important for your kids to know. You can do it!

  • Look up the suggested memory verse for your kids’ age in the Vision For Kids And Teens, and write it on the bathroom mirror or on a display by the table to memorize together

  • Be ok with not knowing all the answers to your kids’ questions. If you don’t know, look up the answers together or talk to a pastor together.

 

Worship Service

  • Bring your kids to the worship service. We think bringing them at a young age is a great way to get them used to being part of the service. They’ll learn the songs, and slowly over the years, they’ll start to hear things from the sermon too! You might want to pack some snacks and activities for your kids to do as they start out in the service :)

  • Sing Bible songs and other Christian music on car-rides or at home

 

Neighborhood

  • Find ways to bless your neighbors with your kids - sweep walkways, weed, make food or dessert, shop for elderly people

  • Adopt someone who is elderly in your neighborhood – have dinner, help clean, yard work, etc

  • Clean up trash on the street as a family

  • Pray for neighbors

 

World

  • Have your kids choose a country and get to know about it and pray for it

  • Sponsor a child in another country whose birthday is the same as your kids birthday

 

Big questions your kids might ask

  • Are your kids starting to ask big questions about the world around them and about God? You can answer them! And your homegroup leaders, pastors, and other wise parent friends are also here to talk through any questions your kids have.


 

age-specific

0-2 year old ideas

  • You can start reading the Bible with your child, praying out loud with them, and bringing them to the worship service at a young age to instill good habits. In the worship service? Yes! It’s a great place for babies to nap during the sermon, and it’s fun to hold them (dance with them?) during the singing

  • Participate in a Child Dedication service. Child Dedication is a significant moment for the family and church to come together and thank God for your kid and dedicate themselves to help raise your child

 

2-4 year old ideas

  • God has created us with amazing bodies! Over the course of their entire childhood, you as their parent get to help them understand how their bodies work and appreciate how good and beautiful their bodies are. At this age, it’s good to simply teach them the names of all their body parts.

  • Bring your kids to the worship service. One of the best things you can do as a parent is help your kids get used to being part of the worship service. They will pick up more than it appears! The songs will get into their hearts, and they’ll start to listen to the sermons as they get older. At this age, hold your kids with you during singing, and bring books, toys, and snacks for your kids to help them sit through the sermon.

  • Help kids have words for their emotions. God has given us amazing emotions and us parents can help our kids be attentive to them. When you notice they are sad you can say, “You feel sad that ….” Or when they are angry, “You are angry because…”  

 

K-2nd grade ideas

  • Still feel encouraged to bring your kids to the worship service!  It starts to get hard in a different way at this age.  But it is still valuable and kids will be learning all sorts of things. You might want to keep bringing snacks and books 

  • One of the goals as parents is to have conversation with your kids about important things, like faith, relationships and sexuality, and technology. You don’t have to cram all there is to know about these into one conversation. Instead, you get to talk about these things again and again as your kids grow up. If you want recommendations on resources to help you have conversations, just ask one of the staff.

  • Help kids recognize that emotions are a God given gift to help us notice our world and act.  When you are reading the Bible, pay attention to how feelings are mentioned.  How did the emotions lead to something good?  Also, help kids see that we always have choices to make - and sometimes with emotions we need to hit the pause button for a second before we make the choice.  For example, the emotion of anger is excellent at identifying problems.  But it is difficult to choose good solutions to the problems when we still feel anger.  Sometimes we need to pause hit the pause button while we consider our options. Our emotions are such a significant part of our experience with life and God, and parents have the opportunity to help cultivate kids’ ability to express emotions.

 

3-4th grade ideas

  • The Ology is a great book to read to your kids at this age

  • Around the ages of 8-10, buy them their own Bible. 

  • As kids get older and become proficient readers, we often think that they no longer need us to read aloud to them.  But kids still love being read to - so don’t miss out on this valuable treasure.  Spend time reading aloud great literature as a family.

5-6th grade ideas

  • Praying for friends starts to become more personal at this age.  When talking through friend stuff with your child, don’t forget that it is a wonderful thing to pray with your child for their friends.  Try praying at bedtime together - not necessarily right after the conversation.  

Junior High and High School ideas

  • Sign up to get the Cultural Translator emails from axis.org. The emails, along with so many other parent resources, will be a huge help as you parent through the teen years. Definitely worth your time and money

  • Read Engaging Your Teen’s World. It’s a good book about how to talk with your teens about many things they are experiencing

  • Some kids become less talkative about their personal world at this age.  Find creative ways, unique to your kid’s style, to become aware of what their world is.  Perhaps it means hosting friends and food at your house, or being a chauffeur for your teens and hearing their conversations, or pausing what you’re doing and giving your teen your full attention when they come to talk with you. If you are aware of their life, you are more able to pray for them and with them.

  • Regularly have your child join the church service (not just youth group)

  • For their 16th or 18th birthdays have a separate party for your teen where you invite important adults in their lives, like small group leaders, teachers, and other mentors

connect with us

Neil Redenbaugh

Neil Redenbaugh

Youth and Family Pastor

530.758.7100 x 11

Vanessa O'Brien

Vanessa O'Brien

Children's Ministry Director

530.758.7100 x 19

Teagan Haden

Teagan Haden

Children's Coordinator

530.758.7100 x 19