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Month: June 2017

Make-believe is fun. Join in the adventure!

Embrace your child’s make-believe friends. After all, you also had your make-believe friends when you were his or her age. Join in the adventures your child creates. It is okay to be a kid and “play along” with their world. Don’t just tell them to go play—engage in the game with them. Join them in making up new adventures and situations. Enjoy a tea party or a battle with robots. A few minutes living where your child lives will do you both a lot of good. This builds their confidence and creative thinking skills and gives you a wonderful break from the realities of life you are facing.

Crisis in the Flower Beds

Before Joey’s dad left for work, he reminded Joey to be sure and pull all the weeds in the flowerbed along the driveway and right next to Mr. Davis’s house.   Dad promised Joey that if he did a good job pulling the weeds, they’d go watch the local baseball team’s game at the big city ball field that evening.

This job was going to take a couple of hours in the hot sun.  To help make the time go faster, Joey decided to ask Andy to help him in the flowerbed.  After all, ants know what goes on under the ground.  Many of the underground ant trails pass right by the weed roots.  At least he would have someone to talk to while he pulled the weeds.

Andy liked weeds because they gave his family extra shade on the hot summer days, but he agreed to spend a few hours with Joey to keep him company—and Joey promised to take Andy to the baseball game later that evening if he would help.   As Joey worked, Andy found other neighborhood ant friends in the flowerbed and introduced them to Joey.  That morning Joey also met Barney Bee, Sam Snail, and William Worm.  It seemed everyone was having a great time in the flowerbed that morning.

But then Joey’s older brother, Dwayne, came out of the garage.  He had an insect sprayer with him.  He told Joey that Mom wanted him to spray the flowerbeds and rose bushes to get rid of those pesky ants and then spread snail bate throughout the flowers to get rid of the snails.

  • What do you think Joey said to Dwayne? 
  • How do you think Dwayne responded to Joey? 
  • Did the ants and other neighborhood friends have time to get away before the spraying began?
  • Do you do jobs your parents ask you to do without complaining? 
  • It’s time for you to tell the rest of story!
Band Concert in the Park

School will be out for the summer in two weeks.  I can’t wait to be finished.  Had a surprise today.  My band teacher announced we had been chosen to play a band concert at the city park bandstand in two weeks.  This is going to be fun.  Everyone visiting the park will hear us. I know I have to do some extra practice so I don’t mess up my trumpet solo.  I think this year will end on a high note!  I am going to take Andy so he can hear my band play.

 

Use bedtime to probe into your child’s mind. 

When it is time for bed, try lying down next to your child, holding their hand, and asking them about their day. Listen to what is on their mind. Probe to bring out the good things they have experienced. Listen for what is bothering them or causing them fear. Give your child at least five minutes a day when they are doing the talking and you are doing the listening. After this discussion, close by praying for your child and help him relate to God who cares for his or her concern.

Runaway Ants
Runaway Ants

Andy’s best ant friend is a school classmate named Dickter.  Dickter is a bit shy and lives in the poorer section of town.  Dicker has a disability.  You see, when he talks, he stutters.  When he gets nervous, his stuttering gets even worse.  Too often other ant friends in school laugh at him when he has trouble speaking.  Andy knows Dickter is very smart and is a loyal friend.  Andy wants to help Dicker by being a good friend to him.

One day Andy decides that Joey needs to meet his best ant friend.  He proudly introduces Dickter to Joey.  Dickter just smiles and doesn’t say a word.  When Dickter eventually starts to speak, he stutters and Joey laughs at him.  This embarrasses Dickter, and Dickter decides he has had it and announces to Andy that he is going to run away.  Andy decides to go with him so he doesn’t get lost and has a friend with him.  They skip school and take off for the unknown.

Joey is in class all day and has no idea that Andy and Dicker have run away.  Only at the end of the day, when Andy never returns home, does everyone know they’re gone.  To find out what happens that painful day, you will have to get and read Run Away Ants in late 2014.

  • What is a disability?
  • Do you or a friend have a disability?
  • How to you think kids with disabilities feel when other kids ignore or laugh at them?
  • What can you do to help a friend with a disability?
  • It’s your turn to make up the ending of this story—at least until you can get the book and find out what happens.