Connecting Digitally with Your Kids

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For Father’s Day my son cracked me up when he wrote in my card, “I love you more than the games on my ipad! :)” So touching. But the reality is, my son is growing up in an age where he plays on an ipad as much as he does with physical toys and games. I’m delighted that Lego still captures his imagination as much as Minecraft, and that he’d still rather play outside than on his X-box, but at the same time I have a love-hate relationship with iPad games. There are times I wish he didn’t have one – but I also realize that touch-tablet technology is the world he is growing up in. While he can use the family iMac with ease, it is very likely that by the time he is a teenager, the computers we use will be the technological dinosaurs of a past age. I enjoyed growing up using the very first personal computers and leaping on each advancement as they came out. Even waiting in line for a new Apple OS to be released instead of the free downloads of today. But this ‘Old Dog’ has to recognize that both the reality of …

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Check-in Without Lines?

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Imagine computer check-in without computers! Imagine secure check-in without lines. Sound impossible? Not any more. Thanks to the always innovating geniuses at KidCheck, secure check-in is getting even easier. As you can tell by the related links below, I’ve been an avid supporter and promoter of KidCheck for years. I love how they are always innovating to make child security easier and more effective each year. While other systems provide the basics – KidCheck continues to add features and benefits that not only provide a pick-up label, but improve communication between parents, volunteers, and leaders. AND NOW… (wait for it) … They have introduced Express Check-in. That means parents can check-in on their smart phone in the parking lot or while walking it, come to your check-in area, hit “PRINT” and be on their way to dropping off their kiddos without every standing in line or typing into a computer. Learn all about KidCheck Express Check-in Here. As I mentioned on my podcast today, the safety of kids is of the utmost importance to parents. When you have a secure check-in area, you score points with parents who want to have the peace of mind that their child is not …

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Making Lessons Relational

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Kids learn best when there is a personal connection with those tho teach them. (So do adults, for that matter. It’s no mystery why the #1 reason people leave a church is that they don’t like the pastor.) If we don’t connect with our kids relationally, we reduce our impact. There are lots of way to be a relational teacher. The Kidology Handbook is the book on the topic, but there are many fun ways to do it as well, by personalizing the little things you do every week. Next week we conclude our Armor of God Series – it’s been a LOT of fun. The kids have really enjoyed our Roman Soldier we’ve been bringing through time to learn. (Watch videos of these lessons here.) The kids really enjoy Micah – he is a nut – and willing to do anything to engage the hearts and minds of our kids. (See Capturing Kids Imagination When You Teach.) So when I needed to create an activity for small groups next week, I decided to incorporate Micah into the activity. During the first week of this series, Micah showed up at church in his pajamas – and we ended up talking about …

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The Cure for Smart Phone Addiction

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Last Sunday, our pastor continued a series called Satisfied. He shared some amazing statistics about Americans and their cell phones: 66% of Americans feel anxious if they are separated from their device. 58% do not miss one waking hour without checking their smart phone. 59% of Americans check email as soon as comes in. 89% of Americans check their device every single day, even on vacation. 80% of teenagers sleep with their phone! 84% of Americans believe they couldn’t go a day without their phone. The average cell phone user checks their phone 150 times a day! In fact, many people check their cell phone first thing in the morning and as the last thing they do before going to sleep. They go to bed and wake up checking their smart phone. While some people are worse than others, all of us, I believe, probably check their phone more than necessary. There is no doubt that we live in a world where our smart phone is now practically a part of our body. How many times have you been in a room filled with friends or family and everyone is on their device rather than enjoying each other? Well, I …

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Change Apple Finder Default View

This may not appeal to many, but one of my many pet peeves with Apple Lion (the beginning of the decline of Apple with the passing of Steve Jobs) is the STUPID “All Files” default view whenever you open a new finder window. One by one I am learning how to undo all the insane “improvements” Apple made to the once inherently and intuitively awesome Mac, but lately they add stupid features you have too Google how to fix. (Like the vanishing scroll bars. Arrrg. Fixed that!) Why oh Why would you want a window that lists every file on your Mac and that takes an insane amount of time to load? The chances of something you actually need appearing in that window is highly unlikely. So you have to wait until it is done loading to click on a useful folder like Documents, or your home folder to get to what you need. So, if that has bothered you, I have found the fix! Simply open a new Finder Winder and go to Preferences, and under “New Finder windows show:” choose what you’d like to see whenever you open a new Finder. While only a few options are provided, …

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