I’m starting to look into kid friendly websites…. If I don’t take sometime to put down some of these links, I will forget them. I have not reviewed all of them all the way. Some our educational and some are for fun.
“Outside of a dog, a book is man’s best friend. Inside of a dog, it’s too dark to read.”—Groucho Marx
Every year, half a bajillion local libraries offer incentive-based programs designed to get kids reading during the summer. While the aim is a good one, we’ve been consistently frustrated with the quality of literature and the general lack of direction. Instead of complaining about those, however, we’re proud to announce we’ve created our own recommended reading list for grades 1-12, complete with great books and a program offering prizes to kids who participate.
The Outside a Dog Book Listoffers approximately 50 titles for each grade. Our list doesn’t promote a liberal agenda, cater to the lowest common denominator, or present books designed to make anyone look smart. A lot of the books are classics, but just as many are Exodus Books staff favorites, designed to open the wide doors of reading to kids turned off by more standard fare. We think many of these books are a great place to kindle a love of reading, but we certainly don’t want anyone thinking these are the only books to read. The only books to read are ones you buy at Exodus Books (just kidding).
June 1–August 31, 2013.
Who Can Do It?
Any student grades 1-12. Younger students may also enroll, but the booklist starts at first grade. You DO NOT NEED TO BE LOCAL. You can download the booklist via pdf, and you can email us your completed book logs. Only local customers will get the bound booklist unless you want to pay for shipping.
$5 per participant. Download a copy of Outside a Dog (PDF) and a book log for each student (feel free to print more). Registered participants will get 20% off the retail price of new books from the booklist from June 1 – August 31. If you choose to sign up online, please include each child’s name and grade in the order comments. If you have more questions, please give us a call at 503-655-1951.
– Read at least three books from Outside a Dog (grade level or above). Each participant who does that will receive one $5 gift certificate to Exodus and one entry into the grand prize drawing (prize TBD).
– High school students need to choose one fiction book and one non-fiction, the third book is their choice.
– Parents need to verify that the books were indeed read.
– We will provide a book log to record titles read, authors, book rating, and place for parents to initial. Keep track and turn this in to Exodus before August 31.
– Keep reading, and you’ll have more chances to win. Each book read beyond the first three nets you an additional entry to the grand prize drawing. These books must be selected from Outside a Dog or anywhere on our website, provided they are recommended for the student’s grade level or above.
We’re still figuring out actual prizes, but we have determined how they will be awarded. If you would like to contribute prizes or help sponsor gift certificates, please give us a call.
– Everyone who reads 3 books from their grade level booklist (or above) will receive a $5 gift certificate to Exodus.
– All kids in grades 1-6 who read 25 books will get a second prize.
– For grades 1-6, there will be one grand prize for most books read.
– Kids in grades 7-12 who read 5000 pages will get a second prize.
– For grades 7-12, there will be one grand prize for most pages read.
– Finally, there will be one grand prize random drawing taken from all participants who have read three books or more from Outside a Dog or our website. The prize drawing will be on the second Friday of September.
Welcome to the 2013 Regal Summer Movie Express! Below is a list of participating locations and start dates. Each location will host the Summer Movie Express on Tuesdays & Wednesdays at 10am for nine weeks. Admission is $1 and a portion of the proceeds will benefit the Will Rogers Institute.
The traveling RecMobile, loaded with tons of fun, visits parks throughout the North Clackamas Parks and Recreation District during the summertime. Kids ages 5-10 get to play a variety of games, sports, crafts and other fun activities. Each week the crafts and activities are planned around a theme such as beach fun, animals and more. This is a FREE drop-in program, and children may come and go as they please. Children under age 6 must have a parent or guardian present to aid the child. (* denotes a free summer lunch location).
Bless your husband by praying for him! The Apostle Paul instructed all Christians to pray for one another (Ephesians 6:18). This includes wives’ responsibility and privilege to pray for their husbands. Earnest prayer for your husband is good for him, for you and the spiritual health of your home (Proverbs 31:11-12).
Satan desires to destroy your husband, especially his character and his leadership in your relationship. Trust God through prayer as you daily surrender your husband and marriage to the Lord’s wise, loving care.
Day 1 Pray that your husband will grow spiritually and consider his accountability before the Lord. Pray that he will guard his heart by developing spiritual disciplines—Bible reading and study, prayer, meditation, scripture memorization, etc. (2 Peter 3:18; Prov. 4:23)
Day 2 Pray that your husband’s relationship with God and His Word will bear fruit in his life. Pray that he will be a man of wisdom and understanding, fearing the Lord. (Prov. 3:7, 9:10; Ps. 112:1)
Day 3 Pray that your husband will be humble and quick to agree with God about his sin. Pray that his heart will be tender toward the voice of the Lord. (Ps. 51:2-4; Micah 6:8)
Day 4Pray that your husband will grow in leadership skills in your relationship—protecting and providing for you. Pray that he will lead you wisely and love you sacrificially, so that God will be glorified in your marriage. (Eph. 5:25-29; Col. 3:19)
Day 5Pray that your husband will be faithful to his wedding vows. Pray that he will have a desire to cultivate your relationship as a sign of his loyalty and commitment to you, and as a picture of Christ’s love for the Church. (Prov. 20:6; Gen. 2:24)
Day 6 Pray that your husband will love righteousness and hate wickedness, especially the evils of the culture. Pray that he will recognize and avoid wickedness in his own life, and if necessary, take a clear, strong stand against evil. (Prov. 27:12; John 17:15; 1 Cor. 10:12-13)
Day 7Pray that your husband will safeguard his heart against inappropriate relationships with the opposite sex. Pray that his heart will be pure and undivided in his commitment to you. (Prov. 6:23-24, 26; Rom. 13:14)
Day 8Pray that your husband will work hard to provide for your family, to the best of his ability. Pray that the character qualities necessary for a successful career and ministry will be a growing part of his character—persistence, decisiveness, strength, an analytical mind, organizational skills, positive relationships with people, determination, etc. (Rom. 12:11; 1 Cor. 15:58)
Day 9Pray that your husband handle finances wisely, will have discernment concerning budgeting and investments, and will be a good steward of his money in regard to giving to the Lord’s work. Pray that money will not become a source of discord in your family. (Prov. 23:4-5; Rom. 12:13; Heb. 13:5)
Day 10Pray that your husband will cultivate strong integrity, and not compromise his convictions. Pray that his testimony will be genuine, that he will be honest in his business dealings, and will never do anything that he needs to hide from others. (Prov. 20:7; 1 Tim. 1:5, 3:7; Eph. 6:10-12)
Day 11Pray that your husband will have a humble, teachable spirit and a servant’s heart before the Lord. Pray that he will listen to God and desire to do His will. (Prov. 15:33; Eph. 6:6)
Day 12Pray that your husband will yield his sexual drive to the Lord and practice self control. Pray that your sexual intimacy together will be fresh, positive, and a reflection of selfless love. (Prov. 5:15, 18; 1 Cor. 7:3; Song of Solomon 7:10)
Day 13Pray that your husband use practical skills to build your family and make wise decisions for your welfare. Pray that he will serve unselfishly. (Gal. 5:13; Phil. 2:3-4)
Day 14Pray that your husband will speak words that build you and your family, and reflect a heart of love. Pray that he will not use filthy language. (Prov. 18:21; Eph. 4:29)
Day 15Pray that your husband will choose his friends wisely. Pray that God will bring him men who will encourage his accountability before God, and will not lead him into sin. (Prov. 13:20; Prov. 27:17)
Day 16Pray that your husband will choose healthy, God-honoring activities. Pray that he will not live in bondage to any questionable habits or hobbies, but that he will experience freedom in holiness as he yields to the Spirit’s control. (1 Cor. 6:12, 10:31; 2 Tim. 2:4)
Day 17Pray that your husband will enjoy his manliness as he patterns his life after Christ and strong men in the faith. Pray for his physical, emotional, mental, social and spiritual strength. (Eph. 3:16; 1 Peter 2:21; 1 Cor. 10:11)
Day 18 Pray that your husband will have an eternal perspective—living in light of eternity. Pray that he will reject materialism and temporal values and put God first in his life. (Matt. 6:33; Deut. 6:5; Eph. 5:16; Ps. 90:12)
Day 19Pray that your husband will be patient and a man of peace. Pray that he will not give in to anger, but will allow the Holy Spirit to control his responses. (Rom. 14:19; Ps. 34:14)
Day 20Pray that your husband will yield his mind and thoughts to the Lord. Pray that he will not entertain immoral or impure thoughts, and that he will resist the temptation to indulge in pornography. (Prov. 27:12; 2 Cor. 10:5)
Day 21Pray that your husband will learn how to relax in the Lord and, in his greatest times of stress, find joy and peace in his relationship with God. Pray that he will submit his schedule to the Lord. (Neh. 8:10; Prov. 17:22; Ps. 16:11)
Day 22Pray that your husband will practice forgiveness in your relationship and with others. Pray that he will recognize any roots of bitterness, and yield any resentment and unforgiving attitudes to the Lord. (Eph. 4:32; Heb. 12:15)
Day 23Pray that your husband will be a good father—disciplining his children wisely and loving them unconditionally. If he is not a father, pray that he will find a young man to mentor in the things of the Lord. (Eph. 6:4; Col. 3:21; 2 Tim. 2:1-2)
Day 24Pray that your husband will have a balanced life—that he will balance work and play. Pray that he will fear God, but also gain favor with people he knows at work and church. (Luke 2:52; Prov. 13:15)
Day 25Pray that your husband will be courageous in his stand against evil and injustice, and that he will stand for the truth. Pray that he will protect you and your family from Satan’s attacks. (Ps. 31:24; Eph. 6:13; Ps. 27:14)
Day 26 Pray that your husband will discover and live his God-given purpose. Pray that he will offer all his dreams to the Lord, and pursue only those goals that will bring God glory and count for eternity. (Jer. 29:11; 1 Cor. 10:31)
Day 27Pray that your husband will understand the importance of taking care of his body—the temple of the Holy Spirit—for the glory of God. Pray that he will practice self-control by making wise food choices, and get sufficient exercise to stay healthy. (Rom. 12:1-2; 1 Cor. 6:19-20, 9:27)
Day 29Pray that your husband will surrender his time and talents to the Lord. Pray that his spiritual gifts will be manifest in his career, at church, and in your home. (Eph. 5:15-16; 1 Cor. 12:4, 7)
Day 30Pray that your husband will serve God and others with pure motives. Pray that he will obey the Lord from his heart, and glorify Him in everything. (1 Cor. 10:13; John 7:17-18; Col. 3:23-24)
Day 31Pray that your husband will recognize the lies of the Enemy in his life. Pray that his attitudes and actions will be guided by the truth as he brings his thoughts into captivity to the Word of God. (John 8:44; 2 Cor. 10:4-5)
“Promoting schoolwork” may seem like strange language. Sporting events, school plays, and political causes are promoted, but schoolwork?However, the Bible uses this language. Over and over, Proverbs pleads with young people to listen to instruction and warns of the folly of those who ignore it.
Proverbs 16:21 assumes that promoting instruction is a good thing, and this verse states a simple but profound teaching principle:
The wise in heart are called discerning,
and pleasant words promote instruction.
This translation is from the NIV. Here are three other translations of the same verse; the additional translations help to clarify the importance of the way in which instruction is given.
The wise of heart is called discerning,
and sweetness of speech increases persuasiveness. (ESV)
The wise are known for their understanding,
and pleasant words are persuasive. (NLT)
Anyone with a wise heart is called discerning,
and pleasant speech increases learning. (HCSB)
Pleasant words encourage and attract; harsh words discourage and alienate. Threats may produce fear and compliance, but they are not nearly as effective pleasant words, which encourage cooperation, enthusiasm, and affection. Pleasant words promote instruction!
Children need the encouragement of pleasant, sweet words to do their schoolwork in a God-honoring way. You want much more for them than just completed school assignments; you want your children to be wise and discerning in the inner man, and you want them to be drawn to God’s ways. From the world’s perspective, finishing the assignment and getting a good grade is all that is required. From a biblical perspective, every challenge carries the opportunity to know God more deeply. This is where pleasant, gentle persuasion from loving parents and teachers comes into play.
Schoolwork provides an opportunity to hold out the gospel. God’s grace, his help, is available to those who come to him humbly and ask for it. And God is honored when children depend upon him for strength to do the things he has give them to do. God is not honored by attempts to accomplish tasks by the sheer force of human will, apart from the help and purposes of God (Proverbs 19:21).
Use pleasant words to help children see that God wants them to trust him, to come to him for strength for each assignment. That is one aspect of why Jesus died. All of life is about living out the implications of the gospel, and schoolwork, too, is an opportunity to encourage your children to turn to Christ for strength if they do know him, and an opportunity to seek God’s forgiveness and grace if they do not. Don’t miss the opportunity to point them to Christ.
How to do it? Here is an example. If your child is procrastinating in finishing his work, you might be tempted to say something like this in a stern, exasperated tone:
“Schoolwork is just part of life; the sooner you finish the sooner you can play. The Bible says not to complain, so stop complaining and get to work! When I come back I expect your work to be done. Do you understand?!”
Now, the content is accurate. Schoolwork is part of life. When the assignment is completed other things can be done. Complaining is wrong and needs to be corrected. Setting time limits for getting work done is often a good idea. Making sure that children understand your direction is also a good thing. But, as Christians, we have to be more than accurate. We must also, in addition, speak with love, compassion, understanding and persuasion. Speaking this way is not natural, any more than it is natural for children to their work eagerly with a thankful spirit. The power of gospel grace is needed as well! James 1:19-20 illustrates the truth of Proverbs 16:21 this way:
My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires.
It is important for your child to know that there is no alternative; he must do his schoolwork. But how this reality is presented or promoted is also important. What is going to promote instruction and persuade him to do his work? Sweet, pleasant words delivered with firm resolve. So, let’s recast the above example from the viewpoint of Proverbs 16:21.
You see that your child is not being diligent in completing his task. Your tone is pleasant and sympathetic, but it is also firm, indicating that there will be no alternative to completing the work at hand. Your words might be something like this:
“I know it’s difficult to do your work sometimes, isn’t it? Is there anything bothering you that is keeping you from doing your work?”
If the answer is yes, determine quickly what the problem is. Usually, it will be best to address the issue after the schoolwork is done so that the problem itself doesn’t become a way to procrastinate. However, occasionally you may discover something that needs your immediate attention.
“Okay, I know there are other things that seem more interesting. But remember, this work is part of what God has planned for you so that you can know him and learn to follow his ways. God tells us to be diligent. Is there anything about the assignment you don’t understand, or is there something I can help with? Okay, then, let’s pray right now for God to help you focus on your work and ask for his strength to finish. I’ll check back with you soon to make sure things are going well. I know there are some fun things that you want to do, and I want you to be able to get to them as soon as you are finished. I love you.”
Obviously, you will have to adjust the language to fit your situation, but be sure to cover these points in encouraging your child to do his work.
Please note, this approach will not be helpful unless you are modeling this perspective as a teacher or a parent with the responsibilities that you have. If you can’t show it, don’t promote it. Also note that this approach requires consistency. Alternating between pleasant words and words of anger and frustration will only complicate things. It is always wise to remember God’s amazing patience with you when you are tempted to frustration with your children.
1. When I Was Young In the Mountains (Cynthia Rylant)
2. When the Relatives Came (Cynthia Rylant)
3. Bunny Bungalow (Cynthia Rylant)
4. Miss Rumphius (Barbara Cooney)
5. Roxaboxen (Barbara Cooney)
6. Only Opal (Barbara Cooney)
7. The Brambly Hedge Series (Jill Barklem)
8. The Boy Who Held Back the Sea (Thomas Locker)
9. The Young Artist (Thomas Locker)
10. Fritz and the Beautiful Horses (Jan Brett)
11. The Bear Who Heard Crying (Natalie Kinsey Warnock)
12. All the Places to Love (Patricia MacLachlan)
13. A Song for Lena (Hilary Horder Hippely)
14. Goodnight Moon (Margaret Wise Brown)
15. Make Way For the Ducklings (Robert McCloskey)
1. Peter Pan (J.M. Barrie)
2. The Wind in the Willows (Kenneth Grahame)
3. The Little Princess (Frances Hodgson Burnett)
4. The Secret Garden (Frances Hodgson Burnett)
5. The Tales of Winnie the Pooh (A.A. Milne)
6. The Tale of Peter Rabbit (Beatrix Potter)
7. The Anne Series (L.M. Montgomery)
8. Little Women (Louisa May Alcott)
9. Little Men (Louisa May Alcott)
10. Kidnapped (Robert Louis Stevenson)
11. Treasure Island (Robert Louis Stevenson)
12. The Water Babies (Charles Kingsley)
13. The Railway Children (E. Nesbit)
14. The Treasure Seekers (E. Nesbit)
15. Heidi (Johanna Spyri)
1. The Little Britches Series (Ralph Moody)
2. All of A Kind Family (Sydney Taylor)
3. Caddie Woodlawn (Carol Ryrie Brink)
4. The Winter Cottage (Carol Ryrie Brink)
5. Johnny Tremain (Esther Forbes)
6. The Good Master (Kate Seredy)
7. Carry On Mr. Bowditch (Jean Lee Latham)
8. Ellen (E.M. Almedingen)
9. Across Five Aprils (Irene Hunt)
10. I, Juan de Pareja (Elizabeth Borton de Trevino)
11. The Journeyman (Elizabeth Yates)
12. Escape from Warsaw (Julian Padowicz)
13. The Trumpeter of Krakow (Eric Kelly)
14. The Wolves of Willoughby Chase (Joan Aiken)
15. Because of Winn Dixie (Kate DiCamillo)
1. The Chronicles of Narnia (C.S. Lewis)
2. The Princess and the Goblins (George MacDonald)
3. The Princess and the Curdie (George MacDonald)
4. At the Back of the North Wind (George MacDonald)
5. The Light Princess (George MacDonald)
6. The Lost Princess (George MacDonald)
7. Tales of Hans Christian Andersen
8. The Redwall Series (Brian Jacques)
9. Dangerous Journey (John Bunyan)