Certainly, the Coronavirus was a world-wide catastrophe that few people saw coming. We are approaching 100 million cases worldwide with over 2 million deaths. Few families have not been affected and most of our young people will be talking about this event for a long time.

We might not be able to avoid catastrophes, but the way we bring up our children might help them cope when they come. Kids who are brought up with good character are virtuous. They have developed habits of virtue that can help them overcome tough times.

Bringing up children is difficult. We want our kids to acquire good habits, but our kids are human and we also have to learn to be patient with them. Sometimes life takes our families off the road and we have to get back on. Parents can’t give up. Many of the greatest people in history had troubled childhoods, but their parents did not give up on them and eventually they came round. As a Catholic, I think of Saint Monica and her years of prayer for her son Saint Augustine. Or in more modern times, I think of Thomas Merton.

We published a book called Papa Bear and the Chicago Bears’ Winning Ways (middle grades) and another called Baseball’s Winning Ways (junior high). In both books we fall back on a self-help technique that Ben Franklin used to develop good habits himself. Franklin created tables that list qualities or virtues that he wanted to focus on. Each night he reviewed the list of virtues and recorded how he did for the day. Patrick McCaskey, the author of Papa Bear and the Chicago Bears’ Winning Ways is a grandson of George “Papa Bear” Halas. For Patrick’s book, he created a list of qualities that readers might want to focus on based on George Halas’s life. In J. D. Thorne’s Baseball’s Winning Ways he included a list of qualities that qualify as fundamental principles that are often taught by baseball coaches. Both books are loaded with photos and facts that readers will find interesting along with certain learning aids that make them great books to own.

Sporting Chance Press