School is about to start and your children will be out of the house soon, they have crazy schedules and demands but they still need their connection with you. Here are some simple ways to reconnect with your child.
Make Food Together
For centuries food has been a skill and legacy passed from one generation to the next, it can incite many positive feelings and serves as a reminder of experiences together. The best part about this activity is, you do not even have to be that good at cooking to do this. The time you spend with your child where you can both explore your creativity and build a skill will be something that lasts a lifetime in their memories. This activity can be as simple as building your own Lunchable, decorating cookies or just making a salad.
Go On An Adventure
The world is large and there are so many things to do, enrich your and your child's life by exploring new territories. This could be exploring the woods near your house, going to a local park, getting in the car and letting your kids decide what direction to go "should we go straight or turn?" Adventures can happen anywhere, use your imagination, and let your kids express theirs.
Tell Each Other Stories
Stories are wonderful for expressing knowledge, emotions, ideas and experiences. Stories are a way for us to understand the world around us, so it is important to listen to the stories your child tells so you can get a better understanding of their experiences. This activity could include: reading, writing stories, making a book together, campfire stories, listening to books on tape, doing a book swap with your child or reading at the end of the night.
Did you know that there are over 1,000 micro-genres of music? Sharing music with your children, and them sharing their music is a great way to get to know more about one another and builds a connection within their head associated to you "oh that is Reba, reminds me of my mom". This is something that can be regularly experienced, you can listen to music in the morning while getting dressed, driving places, maybe you play an instrument and you could teach your child or they know an instrument and could teach you.
Share A Meal Together
Sometimes it is the simple things in life that are taken for granted, having a meal with your child is one of the simplest forms of nurturing and is often underrated because of its simplicity. Sitting down to have a meal without distractions might feel awkward at first but it is a place to learn more about one another. Pick a day during the week, pick a meal you want, and make it a priority to share that meal with your child.
Play A Game
There are so many wonderful games that you can play with your child, it is a great way to spend time together without fear of boredom. This is something that can be incorporated into a routine and it can grow with your child, maybe you start out with Go-Fish and evolve into Settlers of Catan. If you do not have games, many libraries now offer the ability to borrow them.
Look At Pictures Together
Humans are visual, it is helpful in understanding one another to actually see what the other person sees, photographs are a wonderful way to do this. This could be a great opportunity to look at old family photos or albums, take pictures together, make a scrapbook or go out and take pictures of the environment around you. This is a great way to get creative and share stories.
Do Something Your Kid Wants To Do
Kids are so curious and they are experiencing so many new things in their lives, it is important to ask them what they want to do. Make a list together of things you both want to do, keep it on your fridge and do as many as you can with your kids. This will show them that they are heard, their desires are important and that things sometimes take time to get to.
Share A Skill
You and your child have many talents and skills, it is important to be able to share them with one another, it will help to boost confidence, inspire curiosity and teach persistence. You might be a wonderful carpenter, or gardener, maybe you are a great musician or artist, maybe you speak different languages or are a great impersonator, these are things you can share. Your child might be learning new things and wants to share with you what they are learning, maybe they are great artists, poets, athletes or skilled at a video game, engage with them, learn from them.
Do An Art Project
Art projects are a great way to keep a child's attention and spend time with them and it is so versatile it can be accommodated to any age or time constraint. This could be a great way to integrate other experiences, going out on an adventure maybe you make a map, or make a collage of found items. These could be practical too, make some flower bombs or making your own bag. There are a ton of DIY and art projects on the internet, it might be fun to try a few
Go For A Walk
It is important to incorporate exercise into one's life, walking is a pretty straight forward activity and something that can accommodate age, maybe your walks are just you and your child in a stroller, or you racing from tree to tree with your 6 year old. If you can make this a part of your routine from an early age, your kids will grow with this activity and it is something to do that is good for your physical health.
Volunteering in your community is a great way to socialize with others while doing some good. This does not have to be something formal, it could be you and your child cleaning up a local park, or taking a neighbors dog for a walk. There are so many things to do that can help others that you can do with your child while teaching them they can make a positive impact.
Connect With The Community
Communities have grown so much and there are so many things to do, check out your communities website, facebook page or newsletter and make it a point to attend some events that are going on. Spending time with your child during these events can allow you to both see what is going on in your environment and introduce them to an endless line of new and interesting people.
Engage In A Tradition
This is something that can be new with any generation or something that has been passed down from one generation to the next, it can be something that is done daily, weekly, monthly or annually. Here are a few ideas of traditions that you may want to incorporate. Traditions are wonderful and something that can last a lifetime, do not be discouraged if you have to try on a few traditions to see what works best for you and your child.
Kids are developing so quickly, they are learning and exploring the world and need to process it all and one way they do that is by talking. Listen to them and their stories, do not judge, do not give unsolicited advice, try and see things from their perspective. If you want to know who your child is and who they are becoming you have to listen to what they say. Besides kids can be fun and you can learn a lot from them if you just listen.
What are some other ways you can feel connected with your child?