The Science of Training

Find out how science backs up the “Train up a child” verse. When you train your children, you are literally wiring their brains to perform that correct behavior automatically, so when they get old, they won’t depart from it.


This is an excerpt from the book Parenting with Focus by Katie Ely.


“Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he won’t depart from it.” - Proverbs 22:6 (21st Century KJV

Most parents have heard the verse about training up a child in the way he should go. This verse basically means that parents are to diligently train their children according to God’s ways, so when they become adults, they’ll continue with that same moral code. This training involves repeated instruction, and practice of the correct behavior.


But did you know that science actually backs that verse up? When we train our children, we are having them repeat the correct behavior over and over. According to psychologist Dr. David Walsh, in his book, Smart Parenting, Smarter Kids: The One Brain Book You Need to Help Your Child Grow Brighter, Healthier, and Happier, experience is the key factor in how the brain gets wired.


Every time you have your children repeat the correct behavior, the neurons in their brain fire together to wire the brain. The more often your children repeat the correct behavior, the stronger these neural connections will become. Eventually, the connections will become so strong, the behavior will be performed unconsciously or with very little effort.


In other words, when you train up your children in correct behavior, you are literally wiring their brain to perform that correct behavior automatically, so when they get old, they won’t depart from it.



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For more about raising your children with Christian discipline and instruction, get Parenting with Focus by Katie Ely.


Want to connect with other Christian parents in your church? Host a small group parenting class. It’s easy with The Parenting with Focus Video Course. Just watch the video and discuss the group discussion questions. Easy—and fun!