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Our rainbow of respect

January 31, 2011
 |  by Krista

Our rainbow of respect

We started on the Respect lesson with a bang last week! One of the object lessons involves becoming “Respect Detectives.” The original suggestion has the kids looking for disrespectful actions. We added a positive spin and made a chart for both the good and the bad. Rob and I talked about respect having a broad span and suggested that it applies to God, ourselves, other people and the rest of creation. That gave us lots to “detect.”

For simplicity, I just took a recycled, legal-sized manila folder, opened it up, drew a line down the middle and – voila! – we had our poster. We’re using a green marker for the “Respectful” list and a red one for the “Disrespectful” side.

Ben and Jess were so amazingly respectful that morning, it almost made me giggle. They kept “catching” each other being respectful so we could add things to the chart. Both were simply bubbling by the time we left for school. When we picked Ben up for lunch, the first thing he told us was that he saw a kid at the playground leave litter on a bench. So he went and put the wrapper in the garbage in order to be respectful of God’s creation. Yahoo! Way to go, my son!

I wish I could say our next venture was met with just as much enthusiasm. Pffffttttt! We sat down as a family last night in hopes of the kids coming up with some family respect rules. That was about as fun as getting our wisdom teeth out (collectively and without anesthetic). They whined. They complained. They were bored. They sat silent. Finally Jessica quietly said, “Well, I would feel more respected if you would ask me to help clean the bathroom more often” (she loves cleaning toilets). Hmmm. The Kick-off craft directions for this lesson stated that “no idea is a bad idea,” but she just wasn’t on the right track.

After much prompting, suggesting and cajoling, we finally eked out nine basic rules of respect for the Mueller household:

  1. Speak kindly and graciously.
  2. Clean up after yourself.
  3. Let others go/choose first.
  4. Honour God (pay attention when others pray).
  5. Cheerfully obey your parents. (Guess whose idea that was?)
  6. Show appreciation for meals even if the food is not your favourite.
  7. Be gentle with everything God made.
  8. Take good care of the things we own.
  9. Be a good listener . . . pay attention.

We made a “Rainbow of Respect” sign on the computer as the heading. Then I used some spare rainbow-coloured sentence strips (see picture), and we wrote a rule on each. After taping everything to a door in our kitchen, we all felt better. Whew! Now that it’s done, the kids seem to really like it. Let’s see if it’ll help us be more like Jesus. I know I already bungled Rule #1 this morning. Lord, please help me!

Related Lesson: Respect