We all have childhood experiences that have stuck in our memories. It could be the vacation you took with your family to the beach house, the fishing trips you enjoyed with your dad, or the first meal your parents helped you to prepare. Such memories have a positive impact in our family relationships and we often end up passing them on to our children. Family activities are not only fun, but they also help to establish strong bonds between parents and their children.
1. Taking Family Vacations
Time away from everyday life in the company of your family is very healthy. It allows you and your children to spend time together to strengthen the bond between each other and fix any problems that they have recently experienced. When choosing a family vacation, it is important to consider activities that your children like or might enjoy. If you are going on vacation at a lake or beach house, find out which water activities your children would like to participate in. In case they are interested in several activities, schedule days for the activities. While on the vacation, teach them a few things such as how to consider weather forecasts before going on a vacation.
Involve them in discussions about the trip such as the best mode of transport to use, the amount of money to spend, and meal and accommodation options. Making children feel like their input is considered will make them feel special and valued members of the family. During your vacation, ask for your child’s input on various issues including what they would like to do while on vacation. Teenagers are open and free when you engage them in casual conversations. A walk in the woods or a jog would provide the perfect opportunity for you to talk to your child about the things that are happening in his/her personal life. However, do not make it seem like it is an interrogation. Keep the questions light and use a friendly tone to encourage them to open up. Do not judge your child, let him express himself freely and talk openly about his feelings.
Plan for an outdoor trip to teach your child how to fish. You can make it a monthly habit of taking a weekend away from the city life and enjoying nature. Invite your child to come along as you go to a fishing supplies store. Help them choose their own fishing gear, but give them the freedom to explore and figure out a few things about the fishing equipment on their own. Refrain from helping them unless they ask for your help. In addition, let them try to assemble the parts first before you offer to teach them how to do it. If your children spend most of their time indoors watching television or playing videos games, you might find it difficult to keep them interested as you wait for the fish to bite the bait. You can create guessing and trivia games that will make the waiting time interesting and less awkward. Keep them engaged by letting them clean up the fish and help to prepare the meal. The solitude often associated with fishing allows you and your child to talk openly and bond.
3. Eating meals together
This is one of the simplest ways to bond with your children, especially when they are young. However, they learn to be more independent as they grow older and will have other activities such as schoolwork, extra curricula activities, and work to keep them busy. Teach your children table manners from an early age and make the dining table feel like a safe haven. Although it may not be easy to eat together during all meals, make sure that the family eats dinner together. Let your children be involved in setting up the table and cleaning the dishes. While at the table, take turns talking about the day and the activities you participated in.
4. Wine Making
Wine making is a fun activity that can help strengthen the bond between parents and their children. Wine making is a long process that you can take advantage of to catch up with your child’s school or social life. It brings out your free spirit and allows you to spend a good amount of time together. Many parents do not know the difference between quantity time and quality time. Quality time is often interpreted as finding time out of your busy schedule for you and your children to have fun together. In real sense the best way to have quality time with children is by spending adequate time with them. Children should not be treated like appointments that are scheduled in at a particular time.
5. Home Improvement
Children learn about responsibility and relationships by working together in different roles. By sharing home improvement chores, you can minimize stress and find time to bond with your children while teaching them how to do a few things. Home improvement chores can help give your children a sense of responsibility and self worth, and reliance, which are important life skills. Teach your child to view home improvement chores not as punishments but a great way to help organize the house. Provide your kids with a list of things that need to be done and let them pick the chores they are most comfortable doing.
6. Taking Children On One-on-One dates
Take your kids on one-on-one dates. It could be an ice-cream date, a swimming date, or a walk in the park. Make sure only you and your child go for the date. If you have several kids, consider having a date with each one of them. Spending time with your children gives you the opportunity to understand them better and learn a few things about what is going on in their lives. Understand the unique nature of each child and communicate with each at his/her level.
Many parents lead busy lives and find themselves focusing on rushing their children to school and working. Consequently, many parents find themselves missing the precious details in the lives of their children. Engaging in various activities as a family can help strengthen the bond between parents and their children.