Let’s talk about how to hold a “Five-Facet Review”…one of the best ways I know to dig deeper into the hearts, minds and needs of our children.
This post was originally posted back in 2011, but I’ve been thinking about how powerful this practice is, so I’m updating here. Especially since summer is such a good time to get more time trying to figure out these kids of ours!
With five kids running around sometimes the unique, individual needs of each one of them get lost in the shuffle.
Dave had the kids write out their schedules for Family Home Evening minute-by-minute, practice times are all set, jobs are being done and all that jazz.
This is great. Schedules are good.
But as all of us parents know, there is so much more than just schedules to organize.
I want to know exactly what they’re up against with school, friends, etc. What are their most desired extracurricular activities? What are their biggest worries? I want to know if the best way to help is to dig in, or to let them be. Because as I’ve “grown up,” I’ve realized sometimes the best tactic is to “KMC” (Keep Mouth Closed:).
That’s where “Five-Facet Reviews” come in (another great idea from my parents).
what is a Five-Facet Review?
The idea is that you sit down with your spouse or someone else who knows and loves your children. Once a month would be ideal, but hey, take what you can get! This is a chance to talk about how each child is doing in each of their “five-facets” of life:
The beauty of discussing the needs of your kids with a partner
I love discussing the specifics of each child with Dave in the light of these particular categories because man alive, there is so much that he notices that I don’t. And there are so many solutions he comes up with that I never in a million years would have. There’s something about having that detailed conversation that puts up red flags in my mind about things we need to work on that I may have never thought of otherwise.
It also helps me feel content about the things that are going well. It helps me be deliberate, and that’s my main goal as a mother.
Most of all, Five-Facet Reviews help me see into the personalities of my children in a deeper way.
And I love that.
Now, please don’t picture us doing this like clockwork every month (although I wish it would). In our family it doesn’t work to do some formal deal like my parents did. Sometimes I just make sure we cover these topics casually during a date-night. Or Dave will bring up something he’s been worried about one particular child as we fall asleep at night. Dave doesn’t clap his hands in glee when I say stuff about five-facet reviews because he doesn’t go for formal stuff like that.
But we are both well aware of the “facets” and we make sure we talk them through whenever we can.
Things our five-facet reviews help us learn about our kids
Because of these discussions I’ve been prompted to push a little more spirituality with some kids. Dave and I discuss Lucy’s eating habits and how we can guide them. We’ve talked about how Max needs help getting more excited about reading (please send great book suggestions if you have any…), and things like whether or not we should push Elle into trying out for the volleyball team. In our discussions we have realized things like how Grace needs more math help and Claire needs to somehow get more sleep.
Then we make a plan and get to work.
It helps us to know our children in a deeper way.
Really know them.
Combine these five-facet reviews with parent-child interviews to get to know your kids even better.
I think parenting has to be made and re-made over and over and over again. It seems like just when we figure out the perfect solution to a particular situation through endless tweaking and prayer and pushing, another child will throw you for a loop and will need parenting from an entirely different ball-field.
Each child is so darn unique.
That’s why I love Five-Facet Reviews so much. It makes the “re-mix” of parenting for each child that much easier.