6 Ways To Embrace The Physical Needs of a Toddler

Toddlers get a bad rap. Sure they whine and throw tantrums. But can you blame them? There’s a lot going on in those pint-sized bodies.

By age two your little one will grow to half their adult height—something they’ll spend the next two decades reaching. And their shape will morph from one designed for doing a whole bunch of nothing to one that can crawl, walk and run.

With the world at their fingertips, there’s still so much they can’t do. That’s where you come in.

Your Toddler’s Physical Needs

Toddlers bring to us four basic physical needs: independence, affection, rest and wide open spaces. Your toddler probably isn’t even aware of these longings. But now you are.

So let’s break it down, shall we?  Continue reading “6 Ways To Embrace The Physical Needs of a Toddler”

The One Question All Babies Ask

Guest Article by Deb Springer

Wait…babies ask questions?  “But,” you may say, “babies can’t talk.”

Oh, but they certainly can.  From the very beginning, a baby communicates when he or she is hungry, uncomfortable, sleepy, lonely and afraid.

Parents know that each cry has a unique sound and communicates a unique need.  As a caregiver, such as a child care professional or volunteer, your responses to the infant’s needs and cries answer the critical question being asked from birth to about 1-year-old: Am I safe?

Related: Why Kids Need More Than Just Their Parents

In other words, babies are asking:

Will you feed me?

Will you change my diaper?

Will you hold me?

Will you rock me to sleep?

Will you come back?

Why do babies need this reassurance?

Famous psychologists and child development specialists (aka, really smart people) have supplied us with a variety of reasons why it is important to consistently let our infants know, “Yes, you are safe!” Continue reading “The One Question All Babies Ask”

Important Mental and Physical Changes That Happen at Every Phase

In Deuteronomy 6, Moses addressed the nation of Israel and made a passionate plea to “impress” on the hearts of children core truths that relate to God’s character. Some translations use the phrase “teach diligently.” The phrase can also be translated to mean “to cause to learn.” He wasn’t advocating a lecture-based, Torah literacy program where a teacher’s responsibility ended once they presented the content.

What Moses knew was this. The role of a leader is not to simply present accurate information. The role of a leader is to keep presenting, to keep translating, to keep creating experiences until someone has learned what they need to know.

So your job is simple.

Know what can be expected of them and know how they think so they will hear what you say and know what to do.


Mental: The brain has 100 billion neurons (roughly the number of stars in the Milky Way), more than at any other time in life

Physical: Double their birth weight and learning to roll over


Mental:Understands roughly 70 words and learning to walk

Physical:Has grown to half their adult height and can follow two-part instructions

Watch Now: They Grow Up So Fast


Mental: Has one quadrillion (a thousand trillion) connections between brain cells (twice as many as an adult)

Physical: Can stand on one foot, jump, walk backward, and pedal a tricycle Continue reading “Important Mental and Physical Changes That Happen at Every Phase”

Why Kids Need More Than Just Their Parents

If no volunteer can ever know what a parent knows, when why recruit anyone to help with kids and teenagers?

It would definitely make things easier if you could just tell parents, “Since you know more than we can ever know, and you have more time than we will ever have, and you care about this more than we ever will, this is really up to you as the parent.

You could also misquote Deuteronomy 6 to convince parents it’s their job alone, not the church’s to raise their kids. Just skip the part of the text where Moses speaks to every leader in the crowd (not just parents).

Moses was actually the first guy with the idea, “It takes a village.”

Sure, parents should be the primary influence in their kid’s lives.

But research, experts, and statistics suggest that kids who have other adults in their lives have better odds at winning. Continue reading “Why Kids Need More Than Just Their Parents”

The One Thing Every Kid Needs the Most

All kids need the same thing.

Kids who are black, white, Asian, Hispanic. Kids who are fostered or adopted. Only children, middle children, and youngest children. High risk, special needs, gifted, introverts, extroverts, strong-willed, or mild-tempered . . .

All kids need the same thing.

Actually, it may seem like kids need a lot of things. In fact, if you listen to the voices in our culture advocating for kids, you can very quickly become overwhelmed by all the things kids need.

They need a healthy diet.
They need exercise.
They need play time.
They need study time.
They need down time. Continue reading “The One Thing Every Kid Needs the Most”