Each child has been created and formed with the fingerprints of God. As parents, our job is to look at our children through the lens of grace, paying special attention to the unique Imago Dei stamped onto their hearts. Stories shape us from the very beginning; we were all born with the Redemption Story imprinted into our souls. The stories we read in our homes spark unseen flames within the minds of our children. Reading hero stories leads them into creative worlds where their imaginations sprout wings and soar above the heights.
One of my homeschooling goals is to launch my boys into unseen realms of imagination and creativity — be it crafting Lego worlds, making endless art projects with copious amounts of glitter glue, or writing their own stories. I welcome boredom and use it as a catalyst in our home to bring my sons to adventure into the wilderness of learning.
Early on, I realized Asher, my oldest son, simply bubbles over with stories. He spends endless time in the backyard wondering and musing and imagining. So, I bought him a journal. He takes that journal into nature and writes whatever is on his heart. My youngest son, Keane, comes alive with artistic creativity; Monet’s art held his five-year-old attention in ways that blew my mind. So, I bought him an arsenal of art supplies. He’ll grab his art boxes, spread them out on the floor, and create for hours at a time.
When Asher began crafting elaborate imaginative stories, I told him to write them in his journal. The “problem” was that his imagination and vocabulary exceeded his young writing ability. The solution? I set him up with a microphone and an iPad in a quiet room, and had him dictate his story as a video. Clipping that microphone to his little shirt made him feel so important! He recorded six chapters with eagerness and excitement, and then proudly brought me the iPad. I took his recording, typed it up, printed it out, and helped him create his first book. If that’s all we did, that would have been enough! He proudly showed off his book to all of the grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins.
But, I decided to go further. I reached out to one of my cousins who is a professional artist; I commissioned artwork for the characters in Asher’s story. Then, I took that artwork and used the magical powers of Amazon to publish my eight year old’s story as a Kindle version and a paperback version. I wanted to launch his efforts and story-filled imagination into the world so he could tangibly see that the stories God has placed on his heart are important. He has a message worth sharing — we all do!
What have you seen in your own children that is begging to be launched into the world? Their passions should guide education far beyond workbooks or curriculum. God has created them to share his story of redemption in ways that only they can, with their God-given talents and abilities! May our eyes be opened to the Imago Dei artfully crafted into each one of our precious children.