Friday, January 21, 2011

Our Goal

Our main goal with this blog is to point families toward quality media. Some of our guiding Bible verses include:

Romans 12:1&2, paraphrased: Present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is God's good, acceptable, and perfect will.

I Corinthians 10:23 paraphrased: All things are lawful for me, but not all things are helpful. All things are lawful for me, but not everything will build me up.

I Corinthians 10:31 paraphrased: Whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.

Matthew 10:16 paraphrased: Jesus sends us out as sheep in the midst of wolves. He tells us "be wise as serpents and harmless as doves."

First of all, these verses encourage me to carefully critique the world's priorities and advertisements. I'd like to remind families that they don't have to cave in to the world's peer pressure. Our kids don't have to see every popular movie and read every book on the best seller lists. One of our goals with this blog is to help you make decisions about what is worth your family's time, media-wise.

Second of all, the Bible helps me handle the tension of being in the world, but not of the world (John 16 and 17). We don't have to fear anything the world presents, but we are commanded to evaluate it, wise as serpents and innocent as doves. We hope this blog helps you and your kids engage the culture, not simply avoid it.

We understand families must differ in their implementation of our recommendations. The Bible reminds us that different people will have different convictions, and we are not to stand in judgment against this. (I Corinthians 10:23-33).

Ultimately, we hope we save you some time and point you to some fun and rewarding books and movies for you and your kids.


  1. I have been looking for a place that reviews books much like plugged in reviews movies. Today I came across your blog. Here is my do you quench the thirst of 10 year old who can read a book that is for her age group in minutes? I am having trouble finding books that challenge her without compromising on the content. I've tried to move her toward the classics. Do you have any suggestions?
    Thanks. I appreciate what you are doing on this blog.

  2. Thanks for your comment. It sounds like you're describing my 10 year old!

    First I suggest more math, music, friends, board games, household chores and physical activity. I'm serious! These kids that can read 4+ hours a day are most likely neglecting other areas. Reading can be a passive hobby so we need to help our kids engage. It can be very easy to parent a reader because we can ignore them several hours a day and everyone seems happy, but our role as parents is much larger than that. My daughter and I have frank discussions about switching off the reading brain and turning on the other parts. Of course, this means I may need to be available to play Ticket to Ride.

    Second, I applaud your effort to move toward the classics. Of course, this is tricky as some classics are more dated or cumbersome than others. If your daughter will still let you read with her at bedtime, you can do a little editing as you go along. Also, I am not always opposed to abridged editions. Classics you might try include Tom Sawyer, G.A. Henty (Cat of Bubastes), H.R. Haggard (King Solomon's Mines), Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm, Rollerskates, Pilgrim's Progress. If I had to pick a sure-fire winner, I'd go with Peter Pan, especially read aloud!

    If classics are a bit tough to swallow, make sure your daughter is getting plenty of nonfiction exposure. These is usually more challenging and can exercise another area of the brain (logic, science). Check out the post on History Options.

    One of the reasons I like to review series is because they offer a fast reader lots of material at once. Check out the post on L.M. Boston, E. Blyton and E. Nesbit for more of a classic feel. Other series I recommend (but haven't had time to write reviews on yet) include Chronicles of Prydain, Wizard of Oz, Sherlock Holmes, Mysterious Benedict Society, All-of-a-Kind Family, Shiloh, The Borrowers, Redwall, Doctor Dolittle. I have no problem with Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew, but they are like candy and a steady diet could leave you malnourished. You don't have to worry too much with a great reader as they will even self-regulate and go looking for more challenging material after awhile!

    Find one good author and read everything they wrote. My daughter is starting books by Sterling North and loves his Newbery Honor title Rascal. The same holds true for Elizabeth George Speare, Jean Craighead George, Joan Lowery Nixon, Lois Lenski, Lois Lowry, Marguerite Henry.

    Wow, this is turning into a regular anthology!

    So, there you have it: piano lessons, classics, nonfiction, series, good authors, and purchase a good anthology! (Honey for a Child's Heart by Gladys Hunt is an oldie but a goodie.)