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How do parents - approach Teaching - Human Sexuality - to Teenagers - as Christians? Andrew Dumas
23 May 2024
In 'How do Christians and Catholics Approach Teaching Human Sexuality to Teenagers?' by Andrew Dumas, the author reflects on a lecture about the ethics of sex and sexuality and its reception at his family dinner table, leading to broader considerations on the topic within Christian contexts. Dumas critiques the direct instructional approach, advocating instead for a method rooted in ontological questioning and the deep exploration of love and personal relationships, as modeled by Jesus. He argues that understanding human sexuality in Christian teaching should transcend mere ethical dos and don'ts to foster a foundational love and faith that resonate with God's teachings. This approach, he believes, not only helps in discussing sensitive subjects like sexuality but also aligns with the profound Christian principle of love as the essence of existence and moral guidance.
Foundation to Raising Mentally Strong Kids Dr. Daniel Amen
21 April 2024
The YouTube clip titled 'Foundation to Raising Mentally Strong Kids' discusses the importance of brain health as the basis for mental strength, emphasizing that many mental health issues are fundamentally brain health issues. It highlights the use of brain imaging studies at the Amen Clinics, which reveal insights from over 250,000 scans, to treat children and adolescents. The clip underscores that psychiatric conditions often stem from the brain's health rather than purely psychological origins.
Podcast - The Best Thing for Your Marriage Crazy Love
17 March 2024
In the podcast 'The Best Thing for Your Marriage' by Francis and Lisa Chan, part of the Crazy Love series, the Chans discuss the importance of setting one's sights on heavenly rather than earthly treasures to foster a godly marriage. They emphasize the need for husbands to lead their families towards spiritual values and for both partners to remember their purpose and identity in Christ. The core message is that marriage is not about individual desires or gains but about serving Christ and embodying the virtues of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, patience, and forgiveness, as outlined in Colossians 3.
Screen time - is limiting toddlers speech - and language development ABC News
07 March 2024
ABC News reported on a study examining the impact of screen time on toddler's speech and language development. Conducted over 2.5 years with 220 Australian households, the research, led by Dr. Mary Bru from the Ton Kids Institute, involved attaching a Fitbit-like device to toddlers and recording 16 hours of audio daily. The findings revealed that the average 3-year-old might miss out on hearing up to 1,100 words, making 840 vocalizations, and participating in nearly two conversations each day due to screen time. This phenomenon, referred to as 'technoference,' suggests that screens are limiting the amount of language, conversation, and connection children experience, which is crucial for early language development. Speech pathologist Katherine McKinley highlighted that approximately 23% of children are behind in language and literacy development by school age. However, the study also suggests that eliminating screen time is not necessary; rather, the focus should be on moderation and selecting educational content to support children's development.
How to parent a teen from a teens perspective Lucy Androski - TEDxYouth
01 March 2024
A teen’s opinion on parenting from stereotypes and experience. This talk teaches parents about technology, teen emotions, and types of parents, all from a teen’s perspective. Lucy Androski is 13 years old and just completed her 7th-grade year at Okoboji Middle School. As Lucy is our youngest speaker, she has a unique view on parenting teens. She enjoys music, art, and playing tennis. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community.
Blog - What is my role as a dad? Marist Laity Australia
13 February 2024
This blog explores the crucial role dads play in their children's development by actively engaging in their lives, serving as role models, and guiding them through life's important questions and challenges.
The Power of Connection Dr. Gabor Maté's
28 January 2024
Dr. Gabor Maté's lecture 'The Myth of Normal & The Power of Connection' delves into the complex interplay between individual health and societal factors. It underscores the importance of understanding human behavior from a holistic perspective, considering the crucial role of childhood development, societal stress, and emotional connections in shaping mental and physical well-being. The lecture challenges traditional medical dichotomies between mind and body, advocating for a more integrated approach that acknowledges the impact of cultural, racial, and environmental factors. Emphasizing the importance of attachment and connection, it also explores how personal and historical trajectories influence health, advocating for a transformation in health perspectives to include spiritual and ecological dimensions.
Rewiring Negative Self Talk Therapy in a nutshell - Emma McAdama
18 January 2024
The presentation starts by illustrating how the mind is a natural storyteller, making connections and creating narratives to understand the world. This is demonstrated through a quirky exercise where the audience is asked to consider how a desk could be the mother of a chair, highlighting the mind's tendency to form stories even in the absence of logical connections.
Book - Raising Boys Steve Biddulph
16 January 2024
Few books have stayed in the hearts and minds of parents everywhere as much as Raising Boys. Now in an increasingly complicated and nuanced world, raising boys to become emotionally strong, kind and resilient men is even more important and relevant. In response to calls from parents around the world Steve Biddulph has completely updated and revised his seminal work to include all the latest international information and advice for parents on all the key issues of today.
Blog - New Years resolution - Where does Life begin? Marist Laity Australia
02 January 2024
The blog post discusses the transition from structured education to the broader, self-directed learning that life offers beyond formal schooling, suggesting it truly begins at the age of 19. It reflects on the tendency to move away from faith and community during this period, questioning whether life's purpose extends beyond personal achievements and material success. The narrative draws parallels with Mary's unquestioning faith and the concept of divine design, underscoring the value of confronting fears and actively engaging with life's challenges. The author illustrates these ideas with a personal anecdote about mediating a conflict between their children, using it as a metaphor for divine intervention. The post concludes by encouraging a proactive approach to life's journey, inspired by biblical teachings that advocate for trust and courage in the face of fear.
What Happened to You - Healing From Childhood Trauma - & Becoming Self Aware Oprah and Dr Perry
25 November 2023
The YouTube video titled 'Oprah Winfrey & Dr. Perry ON: Healing From Childhood Trauma & Becoming Self Aware, Confident Adults' is a discussion hosted by Jay Shetty, featuring Oprah Winfrey and Dr. Bruce Perry. The conversation focuses on their book, 'What Happened to You?' and covers various topics related to childhood trauma, healing, and personal growth.
Blog - Beyond the Mess - Cultivating Collective - Responsibility - in Housekeeping Marist Laity Australia
21 November 2023
Maintaining a clean and orderly home is a Herculean task, especially when children are in the mix. Their innate ability to accumulate and scatter possessions is matched only by our own adult tendencies to add to the domestic chaos. This realization often comes into sharp focus when we step into the pristine environment of someone else’s abode, prompting an introspective look at our living spaces.
Building Executive Function - Skills in Kids - With Dr. Peg Dawson Dr. Peg Dawson
05 November 2023
Dr. Dawson emphasizes looking at both strengths and weaknesses when assessing executive skills. Celebrating strengths can empower children to tackle challenges, such as a child with dyslexia harnessing goal-directed persistence to overcome reading difficulties.
Blog - Responsibility through our failures Marist Laity Australia
29 October 2023
My children attended a public primary school, where, as you entered the grounds, amidst the vast stretches of verdant ovals, four flags stood tall and proud. Each bore a word, representing the core values of the school. The word 'responsibility' prominently stood out among them. As a parent, and more so as a father, this word resonates deeply with me. Responsibility is, after all, our mantle to bear. If we, as guardians, falter in our responsibilities, how can we expect children to uphold the same values?
Tim Keller and Kathy Keller - on The Christian Marriage Tim Keller
04 June 2023
Tim and Kathy Keller discuss the distorted and unreal relationship our culture has with marriage. They break down their talk into three parts. Firstly, they present statistics that reveal the changing landscape of marriage, such as the rising divorce rate and the decrease in the percentage of married adults. They also highlight the increasing prevalence of cohabitation. These statistics reflect underlying assumptions, such as the belief that most marriages are unhappy and the importance of finding a perfectly compatible soul mate.
5 Parenting Styles and Their Effects on Life Sprouts
03 June 2023
This video discusses the four traditional styles of parenting: authoritarian, permissive, authoritative, and neglectful. Each style is characterized by different approaches to control, warmth, and responsiveness. The effects of these parenting styles on children's development are explored through the lives of four fictional children.
The science behind how parents affect child development Yuko Munakata
22 April 2023
Yuko Munakata offers an alternative, research-backed reality that highlights how it's just one of many factors that influence the chaotic complexity of childhood development. A rethink for anyone wondering what made them who they are today and what it means to be a good parent.
Parents are called to become beacons of hope Marist Laity Australia
11 March 2023
Sometimes I find I can be quite grumpy when I come home with my kids. When my daughter has been using her phone for 1 hour, I can snap at her or when my 8 year old son says “can we play handball?” I can respond with “I am too busy”.
Blog - Men are called to be emotionally involved. Marist Laity Australia
05 February 2023
Yesterday was the first day back for one of my sons to school. He did not want to get out of bed at 7.15 am to prepare for school. Part of me wanted to get angry with for not doing what I wanted and thus force him to get moving. Part of me thought “this is not the best way to start the year with anger”. Next to his bed where he still lay I started doing a whole series of sit ups, push ups and leg crunches. Hoping that this energy would motivate him to start moving. This did not work. As he is smaller than I, I grabbed him like a puppet and walked him to in front of the mirror of the bathroom. I started to sing a song which I made up on the spot “Let’s get going and start the day. It’s time to go to school and start the day”. At the same time, I started dancing with him. Moving his arms up and down and outwards. Despite him feeling tired and not wanting to move. It was a silly song, but soon the negative emotions started to melt away. Humour. Suddenly giggles and laughter appeared. Within about 3 to 4 minutes of singing and dancing my son was ready to get ready for school. There was something about the human contact and humour I had with him which changed everything.
Blog - Overcoming Little Church Monsters Andrew Dumas
22 January 2023
The year is 1984. My 4 brothers and sisters and I pile into mum and dads 929 station wagon. We are going to church at 9 am. We are 6,7,8 years of age. We sit in the first row at church like good abiding Catholics. My brother and I start poking each other. We start whispering into each other’s ears. The giggles start. We are bored. Then all of a sudden dad leans over and says, “if you boys don’t stop it, you are going to get it when you get home”. The antics continue. Dad seems to be very unhappy.
Audio - Raising Teens - The importance of touch 1032 - Collet Smart
21 January 2023
In 2020 it was a difficult year for many people. Shaking hands, a peck on the cheek suddenly became weird. For tactile people this would have been really difficult. Many teens are very tactile. You walk into a school playground in a high school you see girls hugging and guys fist pumping. Lots of physicality but then they were told, sorry no, 1.5 metres apart. You cannot even sit near each other in school assemblies.
How to deal with siblings who fight ABC - Maggie Dent
24 December 2022
Sibling rivalry is normal. When we are stuck at home with lock down. Is there a Silver bullet? No. Children often do not have the language skills or emotional intelligence to deal with this. How can we deal with children fighting? What are the top tips to deal with children fighting?
Blog - How can Parents live as Marists? Marist Laity Australia
25 November 2022
Being a parent is a very difficult job. When our children at different ages place demands on us. When they are born there is a continuous stream of nappies. When they are 2 they wake up at 2 am throwing up. As young children at 5 they want our attention. Mummy! Daddy! As teenagers they want to rebel. As young adults they confuse us and maybe do things we would not do ourselves. Then parents have outwards pressures like keeping a job to pay the bills. Like cleaning and tidying the house. Like mowing the lawn or tending the garden. Finally, parents have relational issues. Will the relationship stay together? As both spouses grow, they change both mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Do our spouses grow with us? Do they accept our changes? Do they want to spend quality time that nurture an already stretched relationship?
Responsible parenting - Create memories, not expectations Austeja Landsbergiene
22 November 2022
Every single one of us knows something about family. Every single one of us is someone's child. Therefore has experienced parenting. Some of us are parents have have our own children. I have four. As human beings we all familiar with expectations. Expectations laid on us to succeed in life. Expectations at work to deliver. To be affective. To know not to fail. Expectations for parents to juggle personal and professional lives. Eat healthy food. Prepare our children healthy meals every day.
Blog - What do teenagers need from their dads? Marist Laity Australia
08 November 2022
As kids grow into being teenagers the needs of kids change. Often growing up, dads seem to work a lot more, spending less quality time with their children. This is due to work demands but also cultural norms which often see mum playing an increasing parenting role. But teenagers need dad’s presence just as much as they do mum.
How To Raise Emotionally Intelligent Children TED - Lael Stone
29 October 2022
Just for a moment I want you to imagine that you are 4 years old. You are on the ground building a tower. In the next minute a kid comes running along and kicks over your tower and you are outranged. You feel these feelings bubbling inside of you of hurt, panic and frustration and helplessness. Just in that moment an adult comes in. Gets up close and says “Honey. What happened?” You see in their eyes there is compassion. You feel that their body is calm and regularity. All those feelings come bubbling out. Frustration. The anger. The helplessness. This out goes “oww…yeah….tell me all about it”. They do not fix it. They do not say to you “don’t worry you can build another one”. They just let you feel all that you are feeling. They open their arms. You snuggle in. And you feel better….then you can get back to building your tower.
Phones. ipads. Houston. We have a problem. Marist Laity Australia
23 October 2022
When my dad got his license back in the 1930s the police officer asked him to drive around the block which took less than 5 minutes and he got his driver’s licence. There were real problems with car accidents, so as the decades rolled by the hurdles to get a car license in Australia got much harder. This was in the view to protect and keep safe people.
Blog - Going into the desert with our children Marist Laity Australia
10 October 2022
Around the age of 12 our children start thinking for themselves saying things like “I don’t want to go to church”, and “Why do we have to go to church?” When around 1910, Pope Pius 10 did not do us a favour by making weekly church attendance compulsory. Children and adults need to form a love for God and a desire to engage with God’s community freely. But at a young adult, they may not have the emotional or spiritual maturity to do so. Mixed into this we, have a western culture which prioritises the individual. Where all pain seems bad. Where do things against the flow of our culture seems not right.
Teens, smartphones and how to get it right ABC - Maggie Dent
03 July 2022
Teenagers love their phones. All day. Every day. Even at night. And while there are lots of really great things about smartphones, there are so many pitfalls — strangers, bullying, porn, sexting. How do you guide your teenager's digital life? Find out when Maggie Dent talks with Dr Ginni Mansberg, GP and co-author of The New Teen Age, a book which looks at what teenagers are up against on their devices.
Blog - do we stay engaged with our children? Marist Laity Australia
30 June 2022
When you are married in a Christian or Catholic Church, you are often asked the question “do you promise to raise your children in the Christian faith and guide them?” But when couples have babies, things start to get busier and busier. As children they grow, there are more and more demands on parents. In the busyness of life, we forget the original words and our promise. But are they first about words of faith? Saint Francis said, “preach the Gospel and where necessary use words”. This suggests that we are called to primarily embody the Gospel, rather than starting with religious words. Can we teach the Gospel without even speaking. Could the words that we use, are rather the fruits of our lived experience. But we often place things the other way around. Words first. Karl Rahner said “the Christian of the future will be a mystic, otherwise there will be no Christian”. The Christian of the future must move more deeply than just the words we use.
Helping teenage boys grow into good men Maggie Dent
25 June 2022
Maggie Dent grew up in the country and she always felt she 'spoke bloke'. As a high school teacher and a family counsellor, she discovered she had a real affinity for teenage boys, and understood how to communicate with them.
Blog - My children asked what is inflation? Marist Laity Australia
16 March 2022
In Australia the price of living is going up sharply. The cost of vegetables seems to have doubled or tripled. The price of fuel has never been this high. I said at the dinner table last night “inflation is increasing”. My children responded, “what is inflation?” They have never experienced inflation in their lifetimes. My ego and mind immediately thought “how do we make more money to get by?”
Why You Should Have Children Jordan B Peterson
13 March 2022
Kids have a bad wrap today. Very rarely do you see kids portrayed well in films. You see this in Harry Potter they are portrayed positively. Kids have a sense of human from a young age. They are really playful. Kids can have the kind of relationship you set out to have. Sometimes it is more enjoyable to do things with little kids than you can with adults. The older you get what you see of the world is your memory. Artists help us break through this. The thing which is cool about having a little kid is that the kid revitalises the world. Kids bring things to life.
Blog - Blessed are you when you are bored Marist Laity Australia
29 January 2022
“Blessed are the poor”. This is the first line in the Beatitudes of Luke’s Gospel. There seems to be a flipping of values of what seems important. When our modern culture says “Blessed are those who are successful” or “Blessed are those who are rich”. What is wrong with riches and success? They can prevent us from accessing God’s kingdom. They close our hearts to the possibility of something more. Through our pride or continuous greed.
Find a new way to love Marist Laity Australia
19 November 2021
As a married man, forgiveness to has been one of the keys of keeping my relationship with my wife together. There have been many times when we have fought with one another and listened to one another about hurts and a lack of awareness or will. There have been countless occasions where I or my wife have had tear filled eyes. And the words “I am sorry” are spoken.
How should parents teach their children about sex and sexuality? Marist Laity Australia
17 October 2021
In Western culture there is a conundrum. By late teens or early young adulthood when a person is becoming more sexually active the question arises “how do we teach our children about sex and sexuality?” This question, may have been ignored by the parent as the child has grown through childhood and teenage years. The parent may seem lost in an array of questions such as “What do I teach my child?”
Why do people become bad parents? School of life
01 August 2021
Given how important to be properly loved by one’s parents in order to have an emotional sane grown up life. One may wonder with some urgency why in cases which range from the regrettable to the truly tragic. The process can go so wrong. Why do some parents who might be in some areas descent and thoughtful characters, fail so badly to love the people they have brought into the world?
Home Schooling - Stage 1 - adjectives, adverbs and conjunctions Andrew Dumas
28 July 2021
With lockdown it is hard to teach our children at home. Do you have child in year 1 or year 2? Here are some resources for learning about sentence adjectives, conjunctions, and tense – past, present and future. Feel free to use them.
A Test to Judge How Good Your Parents Were School of Life
30 June 2021
Strangely and awkwardly no human being can ever grow up sane. Unless it has been loved very deeply by somebody else for a number of years in its early life. But, we are still learning what good parenting might actually be like. How good were yours? Here are 8 rules that you might use to grade them.
The Eight Rules of The School of Life The School of Life
30 June 2021
Often at school we learn about Maths and English. But what about the school of life? What is a swift summary of the building blocks of what makes life work better. Check this video out. This is inspiring. Reflect on this and share with those you love.
Blog - ‘Who do you say I am’ is transformational Marist Laity Australia
19 June 2021
Jesus poses the question to his followers “Who do you say I am?” in Matthew 16:13-16, Mark 8:27-29, and Luke 9:18-20. When we listen to the question, we hear a surface level answer “some say John the Baptist, still others Elijah, while others one of the prophets”. But Jesus is looking for a deeper answer “who do you say I am?” Simon responds, “You are the Messiah”. But in in effect the Messiah was something they did not expect. Jesus was not a political Messiah who would free Jews from the Romans. But are we today to answer also with surface level answers? Jesus’ is someone far beyond our words or labels. In effect, the question is an existential question. A question which could have an infinite ending. When Moses asks the burning bush for a name God answers, “I am who I am” (Exodus 3:14).
A Christian Response to Anxiety Dr Katherine Thompson
13 June 2021
Break down the stigma of anxiety by watching this video as a family or community. Discuss. Lift the lid on the issue.
Building healthy relationship in our Teenagers Marist Laity Australia
01 June 2021
Last week I attended a free seminar on “Building healthy relationships in our Teenagers” that my local council hosted. It focused heavily on the role that parents play in raising their children. The first speaker, clinical psychologist Colleen Hirst, said that teenagers need to develop skills to leave the nest or to leave the home. But in our modern culture the parent relationship has often changed to one of embarrassment.
Book - The 10 things our girls need most Steve Biddulph
17 April 2021
By Steve Biddulph. Nearly 20 years ago, in what would become a landmark piece of research into the way men and women look at themselves, researchers had a series of American college students go into a dressing room, get changed into a swimsuit, and take a maths test
Parenting for British Girls Steve Biddulph
17 April 2021
We are very worried about British girls. They have a 1 in 3 chance of being treated for anxiety and depression. 1 in 12 chance of an eating disorder. What we think it is that the entire country got too busy. You have the longest working hours in Europe.
The Conscious Parent with Shefali Tsabary Shefali Tsabary
05 April 2021
Life’s essential questions first get asked and answered in childhood. Our children pay attention not so much to what our children can verbally tell them. So, we can package the perfect answer. They are barely paying attention to that. Instead, they are absorbing on a deep level. How it is that we embody and live these answers.
Why Parenting Is Not About Raising a Happy Child Dr Shefali
25 March 2021
This is a myth parenting is about raising a happy child. I think that everybody thinks this. Why is this a myth? Because our children do not need to become happy. Life is not about happy happy anyway. Life is to be experienced in every nuance as it presents itself in the as is. Engagement with life to me is happiness and pure joy. Engage with it fully.
The Myth of Unconditional Love Teal Swan
20 March 2021
When we say we want #unconditional​ #love​, what we really mean is that we want an unconditional relationship. We want a #relationship​ with no consequences. We want a relationship where no matter what we do or don’t do, the other person will continue to value us and appreciate us to the degree that they will feel good towards us and never ever get into conflict suffering with us or want to leave us. Sit with this for a minute.
Is the Western way of raising kids weird Kelly Oakes
25 February 2021
From sleeping in separate beds to their children to transporting them in prams, Western parents have some unusual ideas about how to raise them.
Midlife Crises and Healthy Families Brene Brown
01 January 2021
This video talks about our mid-life crisis and how to move through this with other a partner or significant friend. It then talks about key strategies families can use to be more healthy and balanced as a family.
Screens zap imagination and ideas Manoush Zomorodi
20 December 2020
Neuroscientists show that when you get bored, this can be the most productive and creative time of your day. Yet with social media and smart phones we have removed this time. When we are folding the laundry or walking to work, but that is when our brain gets really busy. Once you start daydreaming your brain moves from the conscience to the sub-conscience and this allows different connections. In boring time, you can solve some of the most nagging problems. But now, we chill out on the couch, watching TV while replying to email at the same time. Neuroscientists tell us when we multitask, doing 4 or 5 things at once, we are not multi-tasking, but using more energy to shift between different tasks and we have a limited supply of energy. Dr Gloria Mark says when people are stressed, people shift their attention more often. As people get less sleep, the more likely they are to check Facebook. We are in a habitual cycle.

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