1. Treat kids like people, not your possessions.
Treat them with dignity and respect. Be kind and gentle to them. Be as nice to them as you are to your friends and to strangers. Don’t take out your frustrations on them. Don’t talk down to them or be condescending.
2. Give kids freedom to explore and play.
Let them use their imagination. Charlotte Mason calls it Masterly Inactivity. If you haven’t heard of Charlotte Mason, you can google her name and find out lots of great information about her and her philosophy of raising and educating children.
Let them come up with their own ideas of things to do. Don’t call them away from something they are enjoying and using their imagination for to do a workbook or something you had planned. Unless you know for sure that the other thing is better for them than what they are doing. Let them spend a lot of time outside. They process the things they learn from books and what you teach them during their down time. They make connections. They think more deeply about things. They make the knowledge and information their own. It sticks better.
3. Let them be who they are.
Don’t try to make them act and think just like you.
4. Pray with them about using their talents and gifts to glorify God from the time they are young.
Practice prophetic parenting. Help them find their purpose. Be led by the Spirit and follow your intuition when it comes to the best way to relate to your children.
5. Bless them and speak well of them to themselves.
Tell them how glad you are that God gave them to you. Tell them what you see in them, their strengths and abilities. Make sure you have their hearts. Keep the connection strong. Spend time with them. Make good memories with them.
6. Give them a strong family identity to feel proud of and tell them that they have an important role in the family.
Their prayers matter. Build up their sense of security and confidence.
7. Show them unconditional love.
Do everything you do for them out of love for them, not to get your own needs met. Don’t try to control them. Correct and discipline with grace. Disciple them. Communicate clearly and lovingly. Don’t assume that you know their motives. Let them tell you what they think and feel. Show lots of affection. Spend one on one time with them. Find out what is going on with them, especially when there’s conflict or they seem out of sorts. When they are acting most unlovable pull them close and show the most love.
8. Give them attention and encourage their efforts.
Encourage their imagination. Spend time with them. Let them interrupt you to show you something they did or saw or want to talk about that was interesting to them. Listen to them. Show interest in what they are interested in. Don’t talk at them and dominate the conversation. Let them talk.
9. Point them to God as their Father who will always be there for them to love them and take care of them.
Teach them to put God first in their lives and to ask Him to fill them with His Spirit. Teach them to go to Him to get every need met. Teach them how to hear God’s voice.
10. Teach them to pray and believe and trust God and expect Him to answer their prayers.