After you have mostly mastered parent training, ( let your yes mean yes, and your no mean no), move onto to child training.  Remember, you must be consistent or your children will never understand as the expectations are too moveable.  Consistency is the key. 

Week 2 – Child Training

When I was in the training stages with my kids, I would pick one trait to work on that week.  The pattern of the week was usually the same.

Day One – Introduce what we were going to work on.  Have them start memorizing a corresponding Bible verse.  Remind them what positive reinforcements would happen if I caught them showing this behavior.  I would also take time to remind them that they were not allowed to tell me when they showed this behavior, I must catch them at it.

Day Two – Introduce a game or activity that reinforced the behavior and practiced saying the Bible verse.

Days Three through Six- Play the game or activity, if appropriate.  Pay special attention to children and give them much praise and positive reinforcement of the behavior shown.  Make sure that you praise the kids, in front of Dad, of the times that day when they showed the behavior. Continue to practice Bible verse.

Day Seven – Have the kids recite their Bible verses. I always like to give kids a small treat, each and every time they could recite the verse for me.  Like an m&m or a jelly bean or a fruit chewie. Psalm 119:103 says, “How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!” Earlier on, I wanted this to resonate with my kids, that the Words of the Bible are sweet to our soul and to our mouth.  Years later, they now run for the jelly bean jar when they recite verses for me and any kids who come to my house know that if they can recite a verse, I will give them candy. On the last day, I also remind them that I will still be watching for them to show this behavior but now that I know that they know what they are supposed to do, I expect that from them.  I also warn them that there will be discipline if they fail to do what they know they are supposed to.

Now, that you have the basic pattern you put any behaviors into this.

There are several behaviors that I would recommend putting into place for a smoother home and school time.

First Time Obedience

One of the first times I presented this topic at a convention a woman stood up in the middle of the workshop and asked me what I meant by ‘first time obedience’.  I was a little taken aback but since it then happened at successive conventions, I try to define what I mean by that.  By first time, I mean, if you ask your child to sit down at the table, will they sit down the very first time you ask?  If you ask them to pick up their toys will they pick up their toys the very first time you ask?  If you ask them to come to you, will they come the very first time you call?  If your child will obey consistently ( say 80% of the time) then I would say that they are obedient the first time.

The Bible verse I use to teach this is Ephesians 6:1 “Children obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.”  I would use this verse for children 2-5 years old, but for older kids I would add verses 2 and 3, “Honor your mother and father – for this is the first commandment with a promise – so that it may go well with you and you may enjoy a long life upon the earth.


I play a modified game of hide and go seek with my kids to introduce first time obedience.  I go and hide and then call my kids.  They have to yell, “Yes, Mom” and then run to find me.  When they find me, if they have said, “Yes, Mom” then I give them a treat.  I play this several times the first time and perhaps have my husband do it too and then throughout the week, I would hide unexpectedly and call to them.  Little kids really love this but your older kids will get into it if you challenge them with your hiding places.  Teaching is so much more effective if we can think of fun ways to introduce and reinforce topics.



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4 comments on ““10 Practical Things” Extended Pt 2 – Child Training”

  1. May I ask what form of discipline you use when your children do not obey the first time? Is it consistent with all kids, or do you tailor to what works best with each?

    • It was really tailored to each child. Depending on the child, it could be a time out, picking weeds, doing a chore, taking screen time away or taking away a privilege. I tried to stay consistent that there would be consequences each and every time they didn’t obey but I found consequences work better when they are based on a child’s personality or priorities.

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