Howard Graham is the Chaplain at PDS and is the Executive Director of the Building Boys, Making Men program. He is married to Kimberley and they have a girl and three boys. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Building Boys, Making Men is a PDS-created program designed to give boys a godly vision and definition of manhood. We believe that boys should be intentionally taught about authentic manhood and have a biblical framework for making wise and edifying choices during their teenage years and beyond. The definition of manhood we teach our boys:
A real man glorifies God by seeking an adventurous life of purpose and passion as he protects and serves others.
Stands Up, Stands By
● Displays compassion and kindness
● Encourages his classmates
● Shares what he has
● Honors his promises
● Looks at the heart of others
● Serves and helps those around him
● Tells the truth
● Shares his emotions
● Loves all of his neighbors
● Stands by and stands up for his classmates
Over the past weeks, we have explored how to help our children grow up like Jesus—“in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man” (Luke 2:52). We have seen how to help our kids grow in wisdom and stature. Now we turn our focus to growing in favor with God and man.
As we continue our series on growing to be like Jesus in wisdom, stature, and favor with God and man (Luke 2:52), this article focuses on what it means to grow in stature. You can find the introduction to this series here, and the article on wisdom here.
Quick—think of someone you admire. What four or five attributes do you admire about them?
Maybe you thought of their talents or skills—or even their strength or their intelligence. But it’s likely most of the things you thought of have to do with character.
We should think about our kids in a similar way. We want our kids to grow physically and develop skills in academics, arts, and sports, is that really what we want our kids to be known for? I think we want our children to be known for their character—for being brave or kind or wise.
Growing in stature means developing physically and developing a reputation. As a parent which part of growing in stature can you have the biggest impact on as you spend time with them and shape them? Certainly not height! And while you can have some impact on the skills your children develop, you can have a huge impact on the development of their character.
5th grade parents,
Your boys received their 7 Virtues Of Manhood books today. If you did not get a copy of the book and a parent guide at the parent meeting last month, a copy of each of those is in your son’s backpack today for you.
Taking the time to go through this book with your son will have a big impact on him. Here are the things we mentioned at the parent meeting that will help make it the most meaningful:
- Set aside a time for him for each chapter
- See the schedule inside the parent guide
- Read the chapter and discussion guide first
- Make it special
- Communicate with your son’s mentor when you think they can help your son with something
- Memorize verses with him
You can also visit the site sevenvirtues.org for more information and don’t hesitate to reach out to me at anytime
We all love having friends, but are we good at being friends?
Think back to your best friends when you were in elementary school or middle school. What do you remember about those friendships? Can you remember times when you really needed a friend and someone stood by you? Can you remember a time when a friend stood up for you when no one else did? What about the time that a friend stood up to you when you were doing the wrong thing?
I recently read an article about how artificial intelligence will transform so many things that the entire way schools teach children must change. The article argued that most of what is done in the workplace will soon be done by machines and robots. If artificial intelligence can provide most of the knowledge and skills traditionally taught in schools, the author suggests, the most important thing we can teach is character. Skills and information might become irrelevant, but character is essential to navigating every part of history—even the years ahead of us.
This year we want to give boys a chance to learn more about what it means to be a man while spending time with an adult that is teaching them about manhood. So, we are hosting a monthly breakfast focusing on the 7 Virtues of Manhood at school.
Our 7 Virtues of Manhood Breakfasts are for elementary grade boys (1-6) and their adult hosts.
The format will be as follows:
- Start at 7:15 in the fellowship hall and enjoy Chick-fil-A breakfast around the tables, while sitting with others from your son’s grade as much as possible.
- Hear what the virtue means from a 6th grade boy
- Learn the virtue in more detail through a 7 minute lesson from one of our leaders
- Spend the majority of the time working around the table with your boys with age appropriate questions and activities
- End by 7:55
The boys will be dismissed to chapel from the breakfast. Adult hosts are welcome to join us for chapel from 8:00-8:30 in the sanctuary or depart after breakfast.
Dates for the year:
- Sept 6 - True Friend
- Oct 18 - Humble Hero
- Nov 1 - Servant Leader
- Jan 10 - Pacesetter
- February 7 - Bold Adventurer
- March 20 - Noble Knight
- April 3 - Faithful Follower
Because of the nature of this breakfast, each boy must have an adult host in order to attend. If one adult is going to be hosting multiple boys, please enter them as part of the group registration, even if that person has already registered with another boy. For families with special circumstances, please reach out to me and one of the school based mentors will host your son, or we can discuss another option.
We look forward to seeing you October 18.
We have created a new site to serve all types of dads looking for help in raising their families. We have partnered with other authors from around the country to give practical advice, ideas and wisdom for dads.
Check out the site here:
Our children are an incredible gift from God. We not only have the privilege of fulfilling part of our purpose in life as we raise them—we also get the benefit of relying on our Heavenly Father as he helps us raise them. There is nothing greater than knowing your purpose and living it out the fullest. To be what God intended you to be.
We want to invite you to check out this pilot version of our site to see what you think. If you like it, please sign up to get emails (at the bottom of the main page) so you can get new articles delivered to your inbox. Please also share it with friends locally or across the country. During this pilot phase, we’re relying on feedback and engagement from dads to inform our national launch in the fall.
We have so many reasons to be grateful. Let’s celebrate this week.
The moment I met my first child, I specifically remember thinking, “What a gift! What a miracle!” I was blown away by the way God uses nature and humans to create new humans—little miracles. “God you made that little child through us…wow!”
But my second thought was, “Oh God, you are entrusting me with this miracle? Me? I can’t even be trusted to drive a car well, and you are giving me a boy? You love my wife and me so much that you are giving us another human to love and raise?”
I was so excited to hold him and to introduce him to our friends and family in the waiting room. That moment was like no other moment I had ever had. And then God kept giving us more miracles…some we planned (we thought) and some (gulp) total surprises. As dads, there are so many things to be grateful for as we consider what we have been given. This Father’s Day, I encourage you to celebrate being a dad for these three reasons:
Last month, PDS had a parent seminar on social media, smartphones, and other technology for kids. Parents raised great questions, and many of the best solutions came from other parents. This blog is our attempt to share the best of that meeting with you and to answer some of the follow-up questions.
The Problem We All Face
By God’s design, our kids desire community and connection—and in their purest forms, smart phones and social media can help create community and connect people. We see that good as parents, but we also see the dangers in technology. We’re all in the struggle to figure out the right thing for our children based on their age, their maturity, and God’s unique design of them.