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Training Hearts and Hands

Teaching your children to love work and service

By Lorrie Dana

Remember when your tiny toddler entered the room, carrying an item that you needed, with their little face aglow with the feeling that they were helping? Little children are eager to please their parents, often scrambling to be helpers. 

Yet as children grow, they often lose their desire to help and serve. The same helpful toddler, after reaching eight years old, will moan and grumble about having to set the table. Why? Do we, as parents, allow the desire of work and service to die? Is there some way to nurture this precious trait?

Children today spend their time sitting behind a desk at school; then they come home, drop on the sofa, and watch TV until dinnertime. Are we raising our children to be lazy and selfish? 

Work is essential to positive child training. “There is no greater active force for sound discipline than manual work. Busy

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  1. Raymond and Dorothy Moore, Home Built Discipline (Thomas Nelson, 1990), p. 118.

  2. Ibid., p. 119.

  3. Ibid., p. 125.

  4. Ibid., p. 124.

About the author

Lorrie Dana was a homeschool mother and part-time editorial assistant for Last Generation when she wrote this article.