Children grow up so quickly. It might not seem that way sometimes, but it’s true. Often, in between the hectic schedule of our jobs, school, chores and everything else, we can miss out on really being with our children as they grow. Finding ways to spend quality time with your kids requires planning, but the results are worth the effort. Here are six simple ways to help you to spend more quality time with your child.
Mealtimes are an excellent opportunity to spend more time with your family. Do not allow television, smartphones or books at the table, and encourage everyone to participate in the conversation and in sharing their experiences of the day. Breakfast is too often, for many people, a rushed and frantic affair. Try getting everyone up a little earlier so that this too can be a special, family bonding time. Involve your children in preparing the fruits and cooking the whole-wheat toast, while you poach the eggs. It is the perfect opportunity for your child to confide in you about any worries they may have about the day ahead as well as to consume a balanced breakfast to improve concentration throughout the day.
Exercising with your kids is a very beneficial way to increase quality time spent with your family. It motivates you to exercise and to keep healthy while spending more time with your children and not in the gym. Put together a fun and varied exercise routine, or how about purchasing a trampoline for a bouncy family workout. Walking in your child’s company provides you with a perfect opportunity to get some extra quality time with your kids. So, instead of taking the car for short journeys, walk instead. An after-dinner walk also provides another opportunity for creating quality time with your children. Instead of flopping down in front of the TV after eating, a short family stroll around the neighbourhood will help digestion, relax and tire to be ready for bed.
Make time for your kids in play. Word games, like I spy, or making up tongue-twisters, or Chinese whispers are ideal for car travel. Having fun and laughing with your kids will encourage them to open up to you and they will often disclose important information when they are relaxed and playing. Don’t let them shut themselves off with their phones or tablets when in the car, encourage them to observe their surroundings and communicate.
Reading is an important way to spend more time with your toddler. When they are very young, you will be doing the reading, and they will be developing their imagination following the story. As they get older, you should include them more in making up the story. Asking them questions about the characters and the plot will help to stimulate conversation and start preparing them for their time in school. Fifteen minutes of story time before bed is a wonderful way to share dreams and let your imaginations soar together.
Try to set aside one weekend every few weeks to make a special trip somewhere. Enjoy quality time planning the expedition with your child. Trips don’t have to be expensive. An overnight camping trip which takes you all out of your familiar surroundings lets you see one another differently and to enjoy some fun quality time as a family.
Involve your children in repair and renovation projects around the house. They will learn from the experience, and you will bond as you solve problems together.
Always make time for your kids, listen to and answer their questions, respect their opinions and give them your full attention. Make the most of every moment that you have together, and you will discover the many benefits of spending quality time with your kids, for you all.
This article was written by Sofia Lockett.