20 April 2020
Issue 924
Inspiring Fathers - Encouraging Families
Inspiring Thought
New Dads
Video of the Week
Love & Marriage
Single Dads
News & Info
Dad's Prayer
About Dads4Kids
Homeschooling - Coronavirus Pandemic
Dear Friend

Parents are under immense pressure in the middle of the Coronavirus Pandemic. They have to be teachers as well as mothers and fathers. This is a huge burden to bear for parents who already feel overwhelmed with the pandemic fall out.

In a recent YouGov Poll 59% of people said that caring for kids is causing tension in the home. In another question in the same poll 41% of people described home schooling as ‘difficult’.
The topic of Home Schooling came up again and again in our Dads4Kids Date with Destiny consultation held last week to tackle the challenges the Coronavirus was throwing up at Australian families and fathers!

The goal of Dads4Kids, as much as possible, is to meet the need of the hour. Home schooling issue for both fathers and mothers is a huge one at the moment.

Really, looking back at my life, this should come as no surprise to me. Thirty years ago, my wife and I set off around Australia for a year with our four young children in a caravan, towed by a coaster van, on a grand adventure.

The single biggest challenge for my wife, and therefore me, during this 12 month period, was home schooling.

Yes, we encountered crocodiles at river crossings in the Northern Territory. We met wild buffaloes on the road in the Kimberley. We encountered poisonous snakes, spiders and scorpions.

We broke down on the Nullabor Plain in WA. We even got trapped by rising flood waters in North Queensland, during Cyclone Joy , which was anything but joyful.

Having said all that, the biggest single challenge of our 12 months on the road was home schooling our children.

My wife is a very accomplished teacher, but she struggled. Is it any wonder that 41% of people describe home schooling as difficult in the YouGov poll? I know of, at least a couple of, mums who have been reduced to tears amidst the strain of the home schooling process in recent times.

Well, we have some good news for you. If you are one of those people finding home schooling difficult you need to book a place in the FREE Coronavirus Dads4Kids Home Schooling Webinar at 8PM Tuesday 28 April.
Some of the Subjects Covered in the Home Schooling Webinar

1. Find out how to keep your kids on track.
2. Learn how to set good learning boundaries. 
3. Understand the discipline secrets of great teachers.
4. Help your children achieve academically.
5. And much, much more.

Hear from Peter & Liz Lim who are long time homeschoolers with 11 Children. Peter Lim is the Dads4Kids National Good to Great Training Coordinator.

Listen to Matthew & Shannon Jellie who have 2 children and between them 38 years of high-level teaching experience and a sense of humour besides.

Learn from Guy and Anne-Marie Mullon who have 9 Children and are proficient home schoolers. Guy Mullon is also an expert Life Coach.

My wife, Alison Marsh, qualified teacher, mother of five children and busy grandmother of 8, will share her nerve-racking encounter with home schooling and how she overcame in the end.

Let me say one very important thing that I learnt from our joint experience. Dads have to get involved in the home schooling process. If the mother is managing the schoolwork she needs maximum support from the father for the sake of her own sanity. So don’t just send your wife to the webinar. Come yourself and bring her with you!

Please tell your friends and family members about this amazing FREE Coronavirus Dads4Kids Home Schooling Webinar at 8PM Tuesday 28 April.
When you register you will receive the following FREE helpful links and resources in your email confirmation:
1.  Aussie Educator – Free home schooling Resources.
2.  Get access to a Temporary Support Group for Home Schooling in the Coronavirus Crisis.
3.  Free Resources for Home Schooling Parents.

Book your place early to avoid disappointment as places are filling up fast!


If you need help in your Home Schooling, reserve your spot and Book NOW!

If you don’t need the help we are offering, I am going to ask a special favour of you. Can you go out of your way to tell someone who does need help about the FREE Coronavirus Dads4Kids Home Schooling Webinar?

We know for a fact that 41% of families are struggling with their home schooling situation in the Coronavirus.

I suspect, from conversations I have had, that the situation is much worse than that. We need your help to reach the mums and dads who are struggling at this time.

Sadly, we will never reach them because we don’t know them. We need you to tell them about our FREE Coronavirus Dads4Kids Home Schooling Webinar at 8PM Tuesday 28 April.

Just send this email onto your friends and relatives with your note of endorsement.

Yours for Our Children
Warwick Marsh
Warwick blogs at  www.justaman.com.au

PS: See COVID-19 through a child’s eyes in the Grandfathers section this week. A fresh perspective!
Thanks to all the 56 Fathers who have enrolled in the  Courageous Fathering Course  which starts this Monday night via Zoom.
The course is now full.
Phone Peter Lim to go on the waiting list.
0439 616 716
Thought for the Week
One father
is more than
a hundred

George Hubert
Sister Marry was truly a religious woman. Besides for her duties as a nun, she was also very active in various hospitals visiting sick patients and taking care of all their needs. So it was no surprise that one day when she ran out of gas, the only container she could find to put the gas into was a bedpan. Sister Mary happily walked two blocks to the closest gas station filled up the bedpan with gas and headed back to her car. Luck would have it that as Sister Mary started tipping the gas into the fuel tank, the traffic light turned red and she had quite a large audience witnessing the spectacle. Just when she finished pouring in the last drops of gas a fellow opened up his window and hollered, “I swear! If that car starts I’m becoming a religious man!”
New Dads
Loco Paternis;
Staying sane while staying home as a Dad

Episode 4: Eating with the family
By Ben Pratt

We’re taking a break from the Agony and Ecstasy column to bring you something timely; words of wisdom and humour around the transition to being a stay at home dad, and how to not just survive, but thrive as a family while we all do our best to get through the Covid-19 Pandemic.

Who here hasn’t been so busy in the past that they just grab a chocolate bar and a soft-drink to replace a meal while rushing between tasks? Who here hasn’t felt forced to skip meals with the family due to that “important project” or “emergency that popped up”?

Who here hasn’t, at times, been so focussed on getting things done that they’ve put to the side, and maybe even neglected time with the family?

And who, now that he has more time at home than ever before, isn’t struggling with the expected shift in diet and mealtimes?

Truth is, we humans are creatures of habit, and having our habits changed is generally distressing for us. Especially when it comes to food.

And yet, eating with our families is one of the most important things we can do as a father.

This article explains why in greater depth than I want to go into here…

In fact, it states from research out of Oxford that “the more often people eat with others, the more likely they are to feel happy and satisfied with their lives.”

Think about it. This doesn’t just apply to us, dads, it applies to our partners and our children.

If we want to feel happy and satisfied with our lives, and we want them to feel the same, then we should make time to sit and eat together daily.

Right now, there’s not much that could be easier to do either, as so many of us are at home with our families the majority of the time!

Trust me, I get it. There are days when I’ve done the homeschooling and the cleaning and cooking, and the last thing I want to do is sit down to a meal with the little gremlins. I just want five minutes peace while they’re busy nomming. I want to be able to eat in silence and think without interruptions.

The truth though, is that I need to be reminded that they’re not just little gremlins.

They’re my little gremlins.

And I’m their father.

Like I said in an earlier episode, don’t be afraid to give yourself a time out during the day.

But make sure you’re there to eat with them.

And part of what makes eating together important, is that when we eat together with others, we’re more likely to eat healthily, enjoy our food, and whilst we’re doing it, we are building on our relationships with one another.

So, if like me, you struggle with healthy eating, and if you don’t like your vegetables, just remember that your kids probably don’t like eating them either, and a misery shared is a misery halved.

And if you’re like my wife who loves eating her vegetables, just remember that the good habits your kids see you practice are more likely to become their own habits as they grow up.

We are, after all, what we eat.

And a family meal makes us more of a family.
Video of the Week
Corona Virus Press Briefing
Love & Marriage
By Jeremy Brown

Kids are a joy. Our lives are made infinitely better by their presence. Ha ha ha! Sorry, we couldn’t keep a straight face there. Listen: we love our kids more than anything and many parts of our lives are infinitely better. Other parts, however, well…not so much. Kids are little incendiary grenades that burn down all sorts of previously constructed dynamics.

Take your relationship. After kids, marriage is different. It just is. Convince yourself this won’t be — or isn’t — the case and you’re in for a world of trouble. It’s simple math: kids require time and that time is subtracted from other places. Understand this, however, and you can adapt, stay nimble. That said, there are several major ways, which you’ll see below, that kids cannot just disrupt but also harm a marriage. Chances are, we’re all guilty of some of these infractions. That’s okay (kids, man). It’s how we react and adapt to them after we recognize them that matters.

They’re the Only Priority
If you’re giving every second of every day to your kids, what do you think is going to be left over when day is done? Not much. Parenting is a job, yes, but that doesn’t mean it always has to feel like it. You need to take a step back and figure out how you can lighten the load and give back to both yourself and your partner. Are there family members you can ask to pitch in and watch the kids? Is there a neighbour you trust who you can carpool with to give you a morning off? Can you perform a little activity triage and figure out which activities can be cut from the calendar? “Your kids will be just fine if they have a night off,” says sexologist Dr. Jess O’Reilly, “and you’ll likely find that the reprieve from a busy schedule will give you a chance to catch up on rest and self-care.”

They’re the Heads of the Household
We all want to make our kids happy, but there comes a point where that all that energy you’re pouring into keeping your kids smiling is depleting energy from yourself. Letting your kids rule the roost will create division in the household and will also lead to long-term behavior problems with your kids. Accept that you’re not perfect and that your kid will survive if things aren’t always exactly the way they like it. “Every parent makes mistakes,” says Caleb Backe, a wellness expert with Maple Holistics, “and it’s not the end of the world if you forget to send your child dressed in red on ‘red day.’” . . .

They Are Always Between You. Literally
This might seem like a small thing, but over time it can create a large gap. If, every time you and your family watch a movie, go see a school play, or even out to eat, the kids are between you and your spouse, that can negatively impact your relationship. Even something as simple as sitting in the backseat with your child while your partner drives can be a problem. “What happens is that even when the then-infant is now six years old, the child and mother may be both conditioned to follow the seating pattern,” says Dr. Jocelyn Markowicz, a Michigan-based psychologist. “Now the husband no longer expects his wife to sit next to him while driving. He no longer expects to have hand-holding or adult conversation with his wife. Intimacy has changed.” 

Your Life is Over-Scheduled
Of course, the needs of your children have to take some precedence in a marriage. But if every second of the day is built around their school schedules, playdates, sports and other activities, then your marriage is going to suffer. From an emotional perspective, it might feel right that your kids are at the centre of your marriage, but that’s a mistake. When you and your spouse are at the centre, then the kids and everything else will fall into place. “Talk to your spouse about how you would like things to look,” says professional counsellor Heidi McBain, “and start to set boundaries with your kids so you can start to slowly carve out alone time for you and your partner again.”

See full article here .
Through the Eyes of a Child
A conversation between a child and their Grandad in 2095

Child: How old are you Grandad?
Grandad:   I'm 81 Kid .
Child: So, does that mean you were alive during the Coronavirus?
Grandad: Yes kid, I was.
Child: Wow. That must have been horrible Grandad. We were learning about that at school this week.

They told us about how all the schools had closed. And mums and dads couldn't go to work so didn't have as much money to do nice things. They said that you weren't allowed to go and visit your friends and family and couldn't go out anywhere. They told us that the shops ran out of lots of things so you didn't have much bread, and flour, and toilet rolls - 'child giggles'. They said that Easter holidays were cancelled. And they told us about thousands of people around the world that got very sick and died. They explained how hard all the doctors and nurses and all the health workers worked, and that many of them died too. 

That must have been so horrible Grandad.

Grandad: Well kid, that is all correct. And I know that because I read about it when I was older. But to tell you the truth I remember it differently...

I remember playing in the garden for hours with mum and dad and having picnics outside and lots of BBQs. I remember making things with my Dad and baking with my Mum. I remember making dens with my little brother and teaching him how to do hand stands and back flips. I remember having quality time with my family. I remember mum's favourite words becoming “Hey, I've got an idea...” rather than “Maybe later or tomorrow – I’m a bit busy”. I remember making our own bread and pastry. I remember having movie nights 3 or 4 times a week instead of just one.

It was a horrible time for lots of people - you are right. But I remember it differently.

Remember how our children will remember these times. Be in control of the memories they are creating right now, so that through all the awful headlines and emotional stories for so many, that they will come to read in future years, they can remember the happy times.

Author Unknown
Facebook post
Single Dads
By Roger McEwan

“This is your life, and it’s ending one minute at a time . . .”
— Fight Club

Most of the world is experiencing some sort of lock-down. In New Zealand it’s restrictive, all schools and universities are closed and only essential businesses are allowed to operate. It’s been this way for nearly a month.

Even when the government elects to loosen these restrictions, it won’t be going back to the way it was (which wasn’t normal by the way. A quarter of a million children in poverty is not normal).

Most parents will spend more time with their children this month than they may have racked up all year. The choice, and make no mistake, it’s a choice, is to love it or make it miserable for you, your partner (if you’re locked down with your partner) and your children. It looks an easy choice.

One of the lessons I learnt in my over twenty years as a parent was, you can never spend enough time with your children. Soon they will be adults, and gone. If you spend your minutes waiting for the day they grow up, then you may never see them again. Put yourself in their shoes, why should they bother if you didn’t bother.

So, while you have the chance, and it’s never too late to start, bother! Love being a parent. Make the most of this strangest of opportunities to have fun, get to know your children, and your partner, a little better.

The quote in Fight Club couldn’t sum it up any better . . .

Roger McEwan, author of blog and book, Single Dad’s Guide to the Galaxy says:
‘I’ve experienced all the different roles you have to play when there’s nobody else around: a parent, a dad, a father, a stand-in mum, a confidant, always a butler or maid, a teacher and, most crucially, a friend.’

In this enlightening but also very practical book, I (Roger McEwan) share the lessons I've learned from years as a solo dad.

It is not a self-help book. But amidst the rich, always fascinating, often hilarious experiences of my times with my two children are dozens and dozens of useful pieces of advice for parents – from developing a great relationship with your ex (if you can) to letting the children pick the clothes they want to wear, teaching them to cook, and acknowledging that changing a toilet roll is too complex for anyone under the age of eighteen to understand.
News & Info
Coronavirus Dads4Kids Home Schooling Webinar
FREE Webinar

Join us as we share some tips for navigating this challenging time of home schooling your children.

Some of the subjects that will be covered include:

·     Find out how to keep your kids on track.
·     Learn how to set good learning boundaries. 
·     Understand the discipline secrets of great teachers.
·     Help your children achieve academically.
·     and much, much more.

8PM Tuesday 28 April 2020
Dad's Prayer
Dear God

This Dad & Daughter Prayer
sung by Mat & Savanna Shaw
makes any prayer
that is written by Dads4Kids
look utterly pathetic!
Please watch it with your family!
About Dads4Kids
Dads4Kids commenced in May 2002 and is a tax deductible harm prevention charity. Fatherlessness and inadequate fathering has been proven to be a source of harm. The Dads4Kids (trading name) Fatherhood Foundation (registered name) helps children by promoting excellence in fathering. Excellent fathers are in word and deed: responsible, involved, protective, loving and committed to the well-being of their children and their children's mother.

Vision: To transform the nation by inspiring fathers to help their children be the best they can be.

Mission: To equip, encourage and inspire fathers, strengthen and support families and engage with community, church, business and government to see our children thrive.

Strategy: Educating and inspiring Dads, families and communities into action. through electronic and digital media with awareness campaigns, programs, research and other resources.

Equipping and developing leaders of national, state and community fathering initiatives through forums, conferences, festivals, mentoring courses, curricula, training and technical assistance.

Engaging every sector of society through strategic alliances and partnerships.

Values:  Courage, Compassion, Integrity, Humility, Faith.

Dads4Kids Weekly Newsletter: Started in August 2002, this newsletter is the most comprehensive, longest-continuing weekly fatherhood newsletter in the world, according to our research. Read a little or read a lot, we hope it inspires you on your journey to being a great Dad so your children can grow up to be the best they can be!
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