Helping parents help kids

LIHUE — Pastor Rick Bundschuh of Kauai Christian Fellowship is trying to eliminate the “culture of disrespect” in Kauai public schools, focusing in particular on Chiefess Kamakahelei Middle School.

“In a nutshell, we’ve designed a program that gives tips for parenting and how to teach their children the right way to behave,” Bundschuh said. “They’re aimed at people with toddlers, kids, some for teens — they span the spectrum.”

Creating a weekly video centered on fundamental, old school parenting tips, Bundschuh works with children and their families to create a loving, healthy environment.

“Marriage is the most important thing for a children growing up in a family. The kids circle around the marriage and love. The videos are designed to be bite-size and very practical. They’re practical tips.”

Working with children is nothing new for Bundschuh or his “partner-in-crime” Dain Spore.

“We have a very large youth ministry,” Bundschuh said. “The kids that we work with, they might need be church kids. Some family situations are really rough. Not all of them, but we have some kids that come from rough backgrounds. These kids are some of the kids that create problems at school, too. Because we work with these kids, we sat down with the principle (at CKMS) last spring to work with the ‘culture of disrespect’ that these kids bring to school. They asked use to help fix that culture.”

Bundschuh and Spore sat down after meeting with CKMS representatives and tried to figure out a way that would make an immediate impact in a child’s life. In the end, the pair started writing and producing videos online.

“We came up with this idea to go through social media,” Bundschuh said. “People could see things to improve their parenting skills. We do the art in-house, the writing and voiceover, the creation of the episodes in-house, and we do one each week. We’re inviting the schools to use this as a tool.”

Bundschuh wants to make it clear that he is not trying to influence other people’s religious beliefs — he just wants to help children behave better and have respect for their elders.

“We don’t expect everybody to go with every tip, and we understand that,” Bundschuh said. “They’re just tips, so people can disregard them. We’ve seen a real change in the behavior. These tips aren’t anything new; they’re classic, old school parenting tips. They were used in a time when kids actually had respect for their elders and for their teachers. That’s what we’re attempting to do.”

After speaking with CKMS representatives last spring, Bundschuh and Spore started writing and developing ideas at the end of summer. They began releasing weekly videos back in August, which have received positive responses so far.

The videos “really blew up on the Internet,” Bundschuh said. “We’ve actually been contacted by people that do worldwide studies with families. So it has a farther reach than just Kauai.”

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