THE PHASE WHEN NOTHING YOU DO IS COOL, WHAT THEY FEEL RIGHT NOW MATTERS MOST, AND ONE SUDDENLY SOCIAL KID WANTS TO KNOW, "WHO'S GOING?"

NOW -- YOU'RE EMBARRASSING

Figuring out the new rules for your social behaviour can be intimidating. When is it acceptable to walk over and say hello? Why do all your comments elicit an eye roll? Don't be caught off guard -- you're transitioning to parenting an adolescent. This may be an awkward phase for you


NOW -- EVERYTHING HAPPENS IN A CROWD

It may be hard to recognise your Year-7 kid amid all the other Year-7 kids. They walk the hall in pairs. They go to the mall in a herd. They build unfathomably large social media platforms. In Year-7, the best place to be is wherever "everyone" goes.


NOW -- IS REALLY ALL THAT MATTERS

It's not that what you said this morning doesn't matter, it's just that they don't remember it. And it's not that they don't care about their future, it's just that the present is so much closer. Most Year-7 kids are hyper-aware of their present reality. That means there isn't anything quite so motivating as -- right now. Look for ways to use right now to your advantage, and appeal to their present circumstances.

Your year-7 kid is in a season of personal discovery. Not everyone makes the team. Interests and abilities change. Long-accepted values can come into question. On top of all that, this phase is a time of heightened self-awareness. When you consistently affirm their journey through this sometimes-turbulent season, you help them gain stability.

THINKS LIKE AN ENGINEER

You help them learn when you... CONNECT THE DOTS.

WANTS TO KNOW "WHO AM I?"

You capture their heart when you ... PROVIDE STABILITY

IS MOTIVATED BY ACCEPTANCE

You coach their moral abilities when you ... AFFIRM THEIR VALUE

THIS YEAR YOU WILL 'PROVOKE DISCOVERY' SO YOUR YEAR-7 KID WILL OWN THEIR OWN FAITH AND VALUE A FAITH COMMUNITY

In this phase, your Year 7 kid may be asking some hard questions. Don't be shocked (at least not visibly). Doubt isn't toxic to your Year 7 student's faith; it's part of the process of personalising what they believe. Make your home a safe place for them to ask questions, and show interest in what they are learning.

SAY THINGS LIKE :

"HOW CAN I PRAY FOR YOU TODAY/THIS WEEK?"


"GOD MADE YOU, HE KNOWS YOU, AND HE LOVES YOU."


"GOD MADE YOU, HE KNOWS YOU, AND HE LOVES YOU."


"THE WAY YOU LIVE CAN SHOW OTHERS WHO JESUS IS."


"WHEN DO YOU FEEL CLOSEST TO GOD?


"WHAT WOULD BE A FUN WAY WE COULD SERVE OTHERS TOGETHER?"

(Consider serving at church or a local ministry that appeals to your Year-7 kid's interest)


"I HAVE QUESTIONS TOO. WHAT OTHER THINGS DO YOU WONDER ABOUT?"




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YOUR YEAR-7 KID IS CHANGING

PHYSICALLY

  • Needs 9-11 hours of sleep each night and may easily fatigue or develop headaches
  • Girls outpace guys in development
  • Guys experience changes in height and body shape; may develop body odour, body hair, and muscle mass
  • Girls may develop body odour, body hair, and breasts; and menstruation is likely (10-16 years)

MENTALLY

  • Able to see two sides of an argument
  • Enjoys forming and sharing their opinion
  • Solves multi-step, complex problems
  • Has a hard time with organisation and time management
  • Sudden brain growth may lead to forgetfulness

SOCIALLY

  • Often characterised as happy, silly and loud
  • Interested in pop culture and new slang
  • Needs non-parental adult influences
  • Places a significant emphasis on peer opinions
  • Girls (in particular) frequently display excessive meanness, increased attention to self-image, and a lack of confidence

EMOTIONALLY

  • Enjoys silly and sometimes crude humour
  • Benefits from talking about what they are feeling and why
  • Maybe restless and need physical activity
  • Tends to over-schedule their time

You have approximately 312 weeks and counting ...

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