Mentoring Monday Train Up a Child

Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” Proverbs  22:6

Many questions I receive every week have to do with the discipline of children.  And I will answer some as we go along. However, training is the base for children learning to behave and to obey the will of their parents. Training is important to the character development of children. The children who are the most intelligent and most content and least problematic are the ones who have been held the most and had the most personal input from their parents at an early age and whose needs have been attended to. So training starts with the heart attitude of the parents and their willingness to play their loving and cherishing role in a mature and attending way.

There is so much to talk about, and I can’t possibly cover everything in one short video, but I hope this will encourage you and give you some ideas for your children.

Let me know what you think!

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  1. says

    Sally, Thank you for this truth. I have to admit, the times where I have fallen short in attending to my children, training them and ensuring their needs have been met – their behavior and attitudes have reflected my own heart – not following the Father, leading them and setting the example. Thank you for this beautiful reminder.

  2. says

    Thank you for this reminder, Sally! It was a wonderful blessing to listen to this morning as I prepared our breakfast, and it was only interrupted once by a need to train-hahaha!

  3. Judy says

    This is wonderful – maybe one of the most important messages to come from your years of experience. I am sure it will be a huge help to moms of young children.
    As a mother who is closer in age to you, than perhaps many of your readers, I have observed that the parental discipline of consistent moment-by-moment training is often the missing piece. Children may be well loved, and parents may have all kinds of discipline procedures in place, but those things alone leave children confused about the randomness with which the two seem to vacillate. During the early years, it requires that a mom, with gentleness and patience, provide the necessary instruction and explanation that will convey her expectations, and give them a sense of security about what is appropriate in every situation. I can’t affirm too strongly the importance of the before the event/activity preparation – especially the conversation around expectations, but also ensuring that she is taking appropriate food, drawing materials, or puzzle etc. to enable young children to be quietly engaged if they are to behave for the duration of any activity.
    Know this brief mentoring session will bless.

  4. Caitlin says

    Thanks so much for this Sally! My daughter just turned 1, and I’m getting into that difficult stage where she is really starting to show her will and get frustrated with her inability to communicate her needs. It is so difficult not to get frustrated myself sometimes, and I know I need to really focus on remaining patient and gentle. I must say that my mother’s practical advice is so true: never leave the house without having your child eat something right before you leave (and always take a snack). A hungry child is a cranky child!!!!

  5. Susan B. says

    Sally, this is my favorite video so far. Sanity, Love, Preparation, Permanence. This video is a bright spot in my day. My own children are all grown up now. I was captivated by the idea that I am still training myself, even though my children are not in my home anymore. They also still need the ideals you encourage. Many thanks.

  6. says

    Sally, I am so excited each Monday to see your new video! It’s such a treat to see and hear you each week, and today’s was especially timely, as I’m watching it while cradling my 3 week old–lots and lots of time is spent simply holding her, and I’m learning to see this as the most productive part of my day, rather than as an interruption.

    Thank you for investing your time in mentoring those of us who are coming behind you and are desperately seeking wisdom! Many blessings on you this autumn evening,

  7. Amy says

    Sally, thank you for letting God speak through you. As a mom of a young child, it is such a blessing to hear you speak from your years of experience. In our society of go, go, go I often find myself feeling really alone in my desire to create a culture of quiet and rest for my family. But your writing and videos always reassure me that I am working to a worthy goal-that of raising children who will have a strong foundation in God and a sense of belonging to something much bigger than anything the world has to offer. Thank you for being such a blessing!

  8. Angela says

    Sally, this is speaking right to my heart…being gentle, patient, serving, loving, and having the goal in mind, which is their love and trust in The Lord. Thank you so much for doing these videos, and for your writing. It has truly changed the mommy I am.

  9. Clare says

    Thank you for your wise words Sally. My children are 7 and 5, but these ideas apply as much to them now as they did when they were little. It is so easy to forget as they get older and more independent :)

  10. Mary P. says

    Thank you Sally for taking the time to make these videos!!!!! I am in need of mentoring as I am a mom with young children. Thank you for this specific encouragement. I see areas that I am doing what you are saying but a lot of areas that I need to work on with the Lord’s help. Motherhood truly is such a refining process, as it is training me first in so many areas.

  11. Kali says

    Sally, thank you so much for your “Mentoring Monday” vlogs! I look forward to it each week :-)

    I sometimes forget to stop and really think about the difference between training and discipline – and it really is an important difference. What you had to say was a great outline for what training is. I pray I can train myself to get better at that! I want to raise my children as you describe, but I know all too well that I fail quite often. I guess this is the time to remember that I can do all things with the Lord, eh? Need to just keep praying and praying for His help! :-)

    Thanks again for all the wisdom you share through your writing and vlogs and everything else you do. God bless you!

  12. Hillary says

    Thank you so much for your thoughts of wisdom. I am going to put into practice the gentle hands and I can’t hear you when you whine suggestions :) I need things to help me with my rambunctious, delayed speech, all boy boy! I so appreciate you taking the time to mentor us moms who are searching for guidance!
    Bless you!

  13. Sharon says


    Fantastic! I need to listen to it again and take notes! Passed it along to my sister. Thank you for sharing.

  14. says

    Oh Sally, your words are music to my ears. For our entire 13 years of parenting, my husband and I have felt like we are the only ones who think this way. You speak our language!

    Ironically, as we are in the throws of training our new, young dog, we’re reminded again about the importance of the long term vision necessary for the training process. We know there are no guarantees for outcomes –with dogs or kids — but that the focused attention and purposeful teaching moments are critical in shaping trust, establishing love, and developing the character traits desired long term.

    Please continue all that you are doing. Your voice is necessary for this generation!

  15. Jamie says

    I read this after listening to you sweet video. (Yes, I have been home schooling 24 years and still love your advice.)

    This is from A Femme d’un Certain Age, on her memories of shopping for school clothes as a child.

    My mother guided me so gently in the proper vestment direction that I thought I made all my own wardrobe decisions. Then my father would tell me what extraordinary taste I had and how divine I looked in my new clothes which called for a celebratory dinner en famille in some swank restaurant.

    I think, scientifically speaking, this is called “imprinting.” In any case, the experience made an enormous and lasting impression upon me.

  16. says

    I’m still seeing the ways my parents poured into me and how that’s helping me with my own children. THANK YOU again for taking Monday’s to do this! I’m soaking it up! This one was particularly encouraging for me to stay on the patient, calm, peaceful track I try to hard to stay on everyday with my kids. And it also gave me new ideas for when my second child whines :)

    We also have your 24 Family Ways and love them!

  17. Antoinette says

    Sally, I just thank God so much for you!! I’m a mother of 3 (9,7, & 5) and I came across your books years ago. I loved your relationship with your children and I truly believe the Lord used you and your life with your kids to inspire us to homeschool. It’s been a hard journey with lots of insecurities and failures, but also many joys and growth in faith!!! Thank you for mentoring us Moms. Thank you for being faithful to God’s call on your life. I am so encouraged every time I hear you or read your blog to continue this calling to mother my children!!! Thank you!!

  18. Stephanie says

    Sally, Thank you so much for your dedication and determination to be a soft, sweet voice of encouragment to moms and families everywhere! I am so thankful for your ministry and pray the Lord’s hand of blessing and comfort be upon you. This message was exactly what I needed to hear. I am a mother of four (boys 10 and 8 and girls 3 and 10 months) precious blessings, but most days I seem to fail at being the mother that I desire to be. Losing my cool and yelling seem to be pretty normal – and I hate it! You spoke about being respectful and honoring to our children and having self control before we expect it of our children. I know this is Truth, but I am not sure how to put it into practice. I want to be gentle and kind…meek and quiet- especially with the ones that my heart adores, but so many times I find myself back in the same pit. I would love a follow up on how to be quiet, gentle and soft spoken with our children – I don’t want my children to remember me as a harsh and loud nor do I want to be displeasing to my Lord. Any help or insight would be warmly embraced! ((Hugs))

  19. Susan says


    I really appreciate the time you take to make these videos – they’re very helpful in reminding me what being a mother is all about as I train my children. I do so wish that all my babies were little again though, but with two of my five children over 13 years old, I can see so many mistakes I’ve made along the way with them (particularly with ‘foundational’ stuff) and would love to start again with the wisdom I’ve gained over the years from you.

    I know you are so busy and so I’m hesitant to ask – but if you do have any thoughts for moms with older children – where foundations have long been been laid, and the children are not ‘little’ any more I’d be interested in your perspective.

    Much love to your dear family.



  1. [...] have been encouraging me in the days since and I want to share them with you. The first are the weekly mentoring videos that Sally Clarkson is posting on her blog each Monday. These videos are filled with goodness and truth and I guarantee they will fill your [...]

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