During the spring, you might have had a case of too much together-time with your family. However, now that school is back in session, you need to work harder to keep your relationship healthy.
What are some creative ways that you can connect with your kids this school year? The following ten activities can help you strengthen your family bond.
1. Attend School Events Together
One of the most meaningful ways to demonstrate that you genuinely care about your child’s education is to get involved and attend school events. Did your district have the annual back-to-school night yet? While some maintain a no-children-allowed policy to let parents focus on the teacher’s presentation if yours has no such rule, why not go together?
If your district resumed some sports, you might not make every match. However, do attend those that you can — no refereeing from the stands, please.
2. Bring Back Family Suppertime
Does it feel like the family supper hour disappeared with today’s hectic schedules? Why not bring it back? Make it more enjoyable by letting your kids help select and prepare your meals.
You won’t grow closer if you all sit around the table, staring at your phones. Create a device-free zone, and instead, ask your children probing questions. Inquire about their earliest memory and see how it contrasts with your recollection of the event.
3. Tackle a Household Chore Together
When everyone does their share, the house-cleaning day is a bit less onerous. Why not pick one night a week to knock out your chores? You can also use this time as a valuable tool for teaching financial literacy.
Make a list of all the items you must tackle weekly, and assign a dollar value to each chore. Cleaning their room might earn them $1 while scrubbing the tub and toilet nets is $5. Your children learn fiscal responsibility, and they complain less — siblings may even argue over who gets to do the grimiest and most lucrative tasks.
4. Or Try a Little Family DIY
Instead of demanding your children become your work crew, give them an incentive. For some, the excitement of learning a new skill serves as a reward. However, there’s nothing wrong with a little ice cream bribery to get them to pick up a hammer.
5. Go to the Playground
It’s probably okay to take your children back to the park. One Japanese study of 100 people indicated that you are 20 times more likely to catch the novel coronavirus indoors than outside. Your run to the supermarket creates a more substantial risk — unless they must quarantine, let your kids play.
Please don’t sit on the bench and bury your face in your phone. Up your exercise quotient and connect with your kids by hopping on the swings with them.
6. Take Mindfulness Walks
Your kids might open up more readily while engaged in another activity than they will when you sit them down to talk. Taking a mindful walk together is an ideal way to get in touch with your emotions — and eventually, get your kids to broach anything troubling them.
Pay attention to the way the ground feels beneath your feet as you stroll. Listen to the sounds of birds singing. It’s okay to maintain silence — it gives your little ones time to think about expressing what’s on their minds.
7. Volunteer Together
Engaging in activities that get you to meet new people while doing good boosts serotonin and oxytocin levels, two neurotransmitters associated with an upbeat mood. Why not share the love while connecting with your kids?
If your lease specifies no pets, but your kids long for one, you can walk dogs to a local animal shelter. If they worry about the environment, sign up for a beach or neighborhood cleanup together.
8. Go Holiday Shopping
It’s hard to believe, but the holidays will be here before you know it. Why not strengthen your bond by starting shopping with your kids?
Before you venture into retail, decide on ground rules for gift-giving. To avoid undue pressure to spend beyond your means, assign one family member for each party to buy for or set a dollar limit.
9. Join a Club
Do you and your teen live to read? Why don’t you join a book club together?
Any mutual interest will do, from gardening to gaming. If you always wanted to learn how to play the latest release, ask your teenager to show you the ropes.
10. Chaperone Field Trips
Teachers need all the help they can get on field trips, and they will welcome as much adult supervision as possible. If you can take the time away or stay at home, why not chaperone?
When you do, try not to hover around your child. Let them interact with their friends first and foremost — but if they collectively decide you’re the “cool parent” to hang with, welcome their presence.
Use These 10 Creative Tips to Connect With Your Kids This School Year
You have to get creative to connect with your kids when life gets hectic. Now that school is back in session, use these ten tips to keep your bond cemented.