With the hectic schedules most of us lead, it’s nice to find some quality time with the kids for at least a few minutes a day. You can be around your kids all day, but sometimes that day can fly by without doing anything meaningful with them. Research has shown that spending quality time helps in the maturation and social-emotional development of children. It helps them feel bonded with and attached to the family as an important member with something to contribute. Quality time builds a child’s self-esteem and confidence in things they do. Here are my five favorite things I do with my kids to spend quality time with them:
1. Night Talks
Snuggling with the kids at night and finding out about their day for about 10-15 minutes can be a meaningful and very much a learning experience for parents. I’ve had the most open and honest talks with my kids during this time. I learn so much about who they are. I try and do it about twice a week! The kids love “snuggle time!”
2. Reading with the Kids
Many parents do this already! You should read to your kids, or with your kids, every night. This is a nice meaningful time with kids, and it is also an important time for them in their education. It’s a nice bonding time as well.
3. Playing with the Kids
It’s important to play with your kids! As young kids, they need the modeling of how to play, how to be creative/imaginative, and how to interact appropriately in play. Kids also love it when you get silly and just “be a kid” with them once in a while too! Have fun with it! It will bring you closer to your kids!
4. Going to Shows with Kids
I love going to shows with my kids. It’s nice for them to learn to sit and watch a live show and to enjoy it. We usually talk about it beforehand so they know what is going to happen, and even what kind of music might be sung. We’ve been to quite a few together, and they ALWAYS love this quality time with us! Sometimes we go on Mother-Daughter dates to shows. Go Diego Go Live was probably one of the best we’ve been to! And yes, dates with the kids is important, especially when you have more than one child. It gives one kid at a time their “special time” with mom or dad!
5. Dinnertime Roundtable
While growing up, this is the quality time I remember having with my family. Whether at a restaurant or at home, sitting at the table together for meals creates a nice setting for talking and finding out what everyone is thinking and doing. It’s so easy these days to want to just take your meal to the computer or TV, but you’re missing out on some quality talk and share time with your family if you do that.
Overall, it is just important to be engaged with your kids, listen to them fully (making eye contact), and make them feel important. You can’t have quality time ALL the time, but you can make a point to try to make time for it throughout the week. An hour here, and an hour there! The kids will appreciate it, learn from it, and feel more bonded to you and confident as individuals. It will also be meaningful for you and help you keep good memories with your kids to treasure.
* How do you make time in your busy schedule for quality time with the kids?