There are so many different parenting resources for every stage of a child’s development. Here are my go-to resources, the ones I keep referring back to.
- Terrific Toddlers, by Mel Hayde. I read these two booklets yearly until my kids were about 10!! They remind me of using my day to train my children in character.
- GFI parenting courses – I know this material is received with a lot of criticism, but I have found it helpful in terms of understanding intentional parenting, and how parenting practices need to change as our children grow through different phases of life.
- Ang at Home (blog). This is a new find for me and one that I’m digging into for this month. Great hands on activities, as well as reminders to teach to the heart.
- Before Five in a Row – not only do I love the books that are listed in this resource, but at the back is a reminder to play games with my little one. I need that reminder! (this is a helpful resource whether you are homeschooling or not)
- Making the Most of Preschool Years, by Valerie Bendt. This book is aimed at helping you teach your pre-schooler to play independently; I’ll be using this book for our structured activities, where I play with. As a toddler grows older, and is practiced at playing with me, I would slowly step away encouraging them to play by themselves.
One of the biggest resources that I can’t share with you – has been my mum! Even though we live at different sides of the country, she has always been there to help me process the needs of my family. Can I encourage you to find an older woman who can be there for you. Someone who understands your heart for your family, who can listen to you, point you to God’s word, hash stuff out with you to get your thinking straight. And even better if you can find this in real life – I know we are a generation that gleans a lot from information, from blogs, newsletters, magazines, video clips etc…. but nothing will replace the interaction with a person who can see into your real life, who can understand your real heart, and who can love your real family. I also know that this can be hard to find – pray about it and see God’s faithfulness to you and your family.
P.S. Some may find it strange that I didn’t include the Bible here on this list. To be honest, I didn’t even think of putting it there – the Bible is a background part of my life. Not background as in it fades into insignificance, but background as it is always there. It is a part of my life so yes, I refer to it in the moments of Toddler parenting – and more often than not, it speaks to my heart, it speaks to my responses to my life, to my children and to my God!