App: YouVersion Bible
For students interested in reading the Bible but struggling with knowing where to start, the YouVersion Bible app is the perfect catalyst. YouVersion contains multiple translations of the Bible, several topical Bible reading plans, a verse of the day, options to read with friends or family, several audio Bibles, and more. This could be a great way to start reading the Bible with your kids, or to encourage them in their own devotional time.
Book: Queen Bees and Wannabes
While this book is not from a Christian perspective, it does provide powerful insight into the minds of pre-teen and teenage girls. This book is all about friendship dynamics within female friend circles. If you’ve ever wondered why your daughter behaves the way she does—or why her friends behave the way they do—this book is a great read for you. Plus, it includes suggestions for how girls can navigate difficult friend dynamics.
Books: Parenting Your _____ Grader
These easy to read, grade specific books provide quick tips for what a kid needs based on their developmental stage—and all from a spiritual perspective. Not only do these self-described “guides” give you a realistic idea of what your expectations should be for your child, but they offer suggested conversations to have in this phase, words your child needs to hear, and lots of journaling opportunities for you. A book is available for each grade.
I Am Second Videos & Website
If your student has never checked out the I Am Second videos, head to the I Am Second website and check some out together. Each video is a short story from the life of an often well-known Christian who has struggled through or with something and, by the grace of God, come out on the other side. Topics include eating disorders, divorce, grief, pride, self-esteem and more.
Awareness: TBH App
Every week, Christian parenting organization Axis sends out an email about current cultural trends that concern our teens. Lifeline has been trying out Axis’ weekly Culture Translator emails for the last few months, and we can say with confidence that Axis is doing a great job of equipping parents with information and conversation starters. Check out Axis’ website to sign up for their emails or to look into their myriad other resources.
The Culture Translator
If your teen isn’t on the TBH app, chances are they know a lot of people who are. This anonymous polling app gives students a chance “to be honest” (tbh) about their friends. While most of the polls are positive (they have to be approved by the TBH team), this may just increase insecurities for teens who don’t often win polls. This article is a pretty thorough look at the app as you decide whether or not you want you teen on TBH.
"Awkward Series" Resources
Below is a list of resources from our “Awkward” Series, where we discussed God’s plan for dating, sexuality, body image and more. These can be tricky subjects to navigate, and we wanted to be sure we offer resources for any of you who may be interested.