Is your family looking forward to spring break?
The Daly family is eager for a change of pace to rest and play. While we had a pretty mild winter here in Colorado, the promise of spring and its warmer weather and extended hours of sunshine is always welcomed this time of year.
If you’re a parent, though, you might be asking yourself how to help your children fill those longer days. In the Daly home, we enjoy spending time outdoors and taking in the beautiful Colorado scenery. During some years we’ve taken road trips.
For many, part of spring break also includes lounging around the house and relaxing a bit. For your children, that’s a great time to catch up on reading or take in a movie as a family. I asked the team here at Focus to put together a list of book, movie and audio recommendations to help fill the down time between the sun-filled activities of the week.
Here’s what they came up with:
- Challenge on the Hill of Fire: Beth and Patrick travel back in time to learn about Saint Patrick and they find themselves kidnapped by Celtic Druids! They must escape and find the Bishop Patritius (Saint Patrick), who is their only hope for safety. Designed for children ages 7 to 12.
- “Bible KidVentures New Testament Stories”: These action-packed tales follow fictional kids through real events from the New Testament. Bible Kidventures helps children ages 8 to 11 manage the transition from Bible story picture books to reading the Bible on their own. Story retellings include Jesus bringing the young girl back to life; the man possessed by a “legion” of demons; Pilate’s wife and her dream about Jesus; and the persecution of the early church.
- “Kingdom Quest: Taking Faith and Character to the Next Level” Books: Tony Evans provides practical guides for ages 7 to 10, 11 to 13 or 14 and up to instill kingdom virtues, highlighting wisdom, integrity, faith, resiliency, purity and service in a way that children can understand. Each chapter, called a “Kingdom Key,” contains related Scriptures that help kids learn to question, reflect, start to journal and apply truth to their lives.
- “Adventures in Odyssey: Jones & Parker Case Files: 16 Mysteries to Solve Yourself”: There’s something mysterious going on in everyone’s favorite town. Odyssey, of course! No mystery is too big or too small for Emily Jones and Matthew Parker. This book compiles 16 of the best stories originally published in Clubhouse magazine into one fun-filled volume. Kids can play detective along with Emily and Matthew as they hear the evidence and examine the clues provided. Recommended for children ages 8 to 12 years.
If you are traveling over spring break, Adventures in Odyssey 30-minute audio dramas are a great way to keep children of all ages – but particularly 8 to 12 – entertained. Here are a few albums to consider:
- Adventures in Odyssey Bible Eyewitness – Hall of Faith: These are 12 action-packed, true-life stories that listeners will experience as eyewitnesses when they join Deborah for the battle of Kishon; spend three days with Jonah in the belly of a whale; and find out what it’s like to build a giant boat in your backyard! These stories, totaling four hours of entertainment, will teach children lessons about friendship, faith and obeying God.
- Adventures in Odyssey #53: The Green Ring Conspiracy: First, a backpack filled with money is found in Gower’s Field; then, a mysterious man survives a nearby plane crash; and an underworld errand boy has possession of a special cell phone. This new adventure puts your kids’ favorite Odyssey characters at the center of intrigue, suspense, and a scheme of international proportions!
- Adventures in Odyssey #60: Head Over Heels: Penny and Wooten get engaged but this proposal leads to even more questions. . . will Penny’s family ever approve of Wooten? And will Penny believe the best about Wooten when evidence seems to pile up against him? Meanwhile, others in town are asking questions of their own as everyone in Odyssey jumps head over heels into the path of truth and discernment.
- Adventures in Odyssey fans might want to consider joining the Odyssey Adventure Club, where members have unlimited access to more than 800 audio dramas, daily devotions, exclusive new monthly episodes and video documentaries that give a behind-the-scenes look into the stories’ production. Other features include hands-on activities, crafts, articles and special discounts.The club also helps raise kids’ awareness to needs around the world. For example, this month Odyssey Adventure Club members are giving 1,000 Bibles to new believers in the Middle East. We worked with Open Doors USA to develop an Odyssey Adventure Club story about how Christians are facing persecution in the Middle East. Members are enjoying Part 1 of “When One Door Closes” as Whit and Eugene take the Imagination Station into a new adventure. All of this is available for just $9.99 a month.
- “The Drop Box”: Watch the remarkable true story of a pastor in Seoul, South Korea who has rescued hundreds of at-risk babies! Inspired by love for his own disabled son, Pastor Jong-rak Lee created a “drop box” for mothers forced to relinquish their children due to cultural stigmas. You’ll be inspired by his Christlike love and moved by God’s faithfulness to each precious child. “The Drop Box” was nominated for a 2015 Dove Crystal Award.
Finally, we want you to help your children learn the true meaning of Easter during this spring break. That’s why Focus is offering a free Easter download featuring special family devos and fun activities from Clubhouse magazine and Adventures in Odyssey. Download the PDF with seven days of family devotions, AIO egg wraps, Easter Fun Cards, and recipes and crafts.
I hope you and your family have a wonderful, safe spring break this year. I’d be interested to hear what your plans are and what you might add to these lists.
Just remember how short the season of raising children can be. I hope you make some great memories together in the coming weeks!