As a mom to five terrific kids, I'm always looking for resources to grow me as a parent and as a home educator. Of course, my primary source of encouragement is God's Word, but I also invest in materials that will bless me and - hopefully - benefit those around me. Growing Great Kids is one of those resources.
Parenting is tough; and if you take it seriously, it's doubly tough. Each child has their own unique set of talents and struggles, likes and dislikes, needs and greeds...and it's the job of the parents to raise them for God's glory through the all the ups and downs of life. Those who homeschool have the added pressure of preparing their children academically. It's much more than a full-time job; for me it's a calling, and God has been gracious to equip me with all I've needed to fulfill that call. The book Growing Great Kids appealed to me not only for my own benefit, but also because it seemed like a perfect fit for my fellow homeschooling mothers.
Written by Kate Battistelli (mother of recording artist Francesca Battistelli), this book has 15 chapters and is 256 pages long. When I read "Successful adults don't happen by accident" in the Introduction, my interest was piqued. I totally agree with this statement! Mom and Dad have lots to do with the future success of our children - and not just success in material terms, but success spiritually. You can be rich and poor at the same time, but a good name is truly a better treasure than pure gold.
Kate Battistelli is frank about the amount of prayer and dedication that goes into raising great kids, and she understands that God doesn't make cookie cutter children. Whether you have one child or ten, each one is unique and will need something unique from you as parents. It's been a key part of parenting in our home, and it has worked well. Let your children grow up into the person God intends them to be...and don't expect them to all be the same in any way other than an expectation that they love and seek to glorify their Lord.
Growing Great Kids covers topics like "Gifts & Calling", "Parent's Words", "Purity", "Diligence", "Humility", "Integrity" and "Parenting Traps". As you can tell, Kate Battistelli has done her homework and hasn't left out any key fact of parenting! And her story is very personal, so you feel like you can relate to her life when you read this book. Even the layout of the pages was refreshing to me (I read it as an eBook, and often the look of the pages can be annoying to me...but not this eBook!).
I can't think of anything I would add to Growing Great Kids, other than perhaps the perspective of someone who has raised more than one child. By that I simply mean each addition to the family poses it's own set of changes, and I've found over and over again that my character has grown and improved as each of my children has brought new challenges my way. Kate does an excellent job of providing solid parenting advice for any family, no matter the size. But I wish there was something in the book from close friends or relatives who have raised multiple children.
If you're interested in growing in your parenting abilities, I think Growing Great Kids is a book you'll benefit by reading. Keep your child in their proper place, behind God and your spouse, and you'll be well on your way to raising a really great kid. And remember success by the world's standards isn't everything (honestly, success by the world's standards isn't anything) but success in God's eyes is worth laying our lives down.
Lord bless you as you homeschool for His glory!
On my "Page Turner Scale" of 1 to 5, I gave this book a 4.
I received a free copy of this book to review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC Regulations. I am part of The CWA Review Crew.
Day 301 done :)
Jan L. Burt
author of The Homeschooling Mothers Bible Study