- Family and Parenting
Finding Time to Spend With Your Child is as Easy as 1 2 3
Children Need the Attention of Their Parents
It is challenging these days to fit everything you want to do in a 24 hour day. With work demands, spousal needs, organizations, clubs, hobbies, and finding personal space/time, it can be easy to come up with excuses on why you don’t have time to give your child the attention that they deserve. I know you may be thinking "most parents would never neglect their kids". Children are their number one priority. But, with the many presenting issues that kids are having these days, I suggesting that they are receiving artificial attention, if any at all. I’m not talking about the robotic "going through the motions attention" (doing it because you have to), but rather the building a meaningful relationship type. Many of today’s youth are crying out for the attention that they are so starving for. Instead of waiting for them to do something foolish and beckon for our negative attention, why not find positive ways to meet both of your needs. I am quick to note that not all children are alike. Different strategies and activities should be used for the variety of your children. Most children will adore their parents and will become interested and involved in whatever their parents are into. This alone may make it easier. Most times, you can find benefits in doing the activities also. Here are some examples of how I have been able to find time to spend with my daughter (who is age 7).
Play Video Games
There is so much fuss these days about kids being addicted to video games. The games are too violent; they need to get outside and become active. While these arguments may be true in various situations, video games can be fun for the whole family as well as the individual. The trick is to monitor the games they play. Wii Fit is a game that helps the family to get fit together. It also builds competition as we try to one-up each other’s best score. She can out Hula Hoop me with her eyes closed. Guitar Hero is also one of our favorites. I'm amazed at how quickly children can pick up new skills. They are brighter than they let on. This is why we need to challenge our kids in the classroom. If they put that same effort that they do for NBA 2K13 in the classroom, they would be on the Honor Roll incessantly.
Guitar Hero song
Help with Homework
Become engaged in your child’s learning. My daughter’s school makes us sign her assignment sheet each night to verify that she completed her homework. If you stay abreast with your child’s progress then it will not become a surprise if your child starts having difficulties. They will know that education is very important in your household; you are taking out the time to help in their success. I know many parents use the excuse that they haven’t worked on a particular subject in years and cannot help them. Well, the internet is an amazing resource. Sites such as KhanAcademy (www.KhanAcademy.com ) have great video clips on most core subjects. You never know,” If you’re not careful you might just learn something” – Bill Cosby.
Example of Khan Academy Lesson
Watch Educational Programming
What better way to monitor what your child watches on television. Qubo and PBS Kids have excellent fun, educational, morally sound age appropriate shows. Word Girl (my favorite), The Dinosaur Train, Angelina Ballerina, Singing Time, Clifford, The Zula Patrol, and Sesame Street are shows that both entertain and educate.
Strawberry Shortcake Comic
Read Comic Books
- I know you are probably thinking “Comic Books”? Well, there are comic books for almost every kid. I used to drag my daughter along when I would pick up my Batwing comic book. Once she saw the Strawberry Shortcake and Smurfs book on the shelf she became a fan. Comic books are a great way to stimulate kids interest in reading.
Go to Church Together
- What better way to build a moral base for your child. Many children enjoy going to church to be with their friends. They learn to socially integrate with others along with being taught things like love, compassion, obedience, sharing, etc. The greatest thing they learn is that there is someone greater than them who takes care of them and watches over their soul. Finally, the saying goes “ A family that prays together, stays together.”
Junk Yard Dog
Watch Wrestling Together
Wrestling has been a staple in my family for many years. I can remember the Junkyard Dog poster in my Grandparents’ house. I remember staying up late at night watching Saturday Night’s Main Event with my parents. My daughter naturally “get’s” the entertainment value of wrestling. I would watch wrestling DVD’s by myself. She would check out a match occasionally. The day I let her decide what match we would watch, I gained a wrestling buddy/enthusiast for life.
Do Chores Together
Do chores together. Doing them by themselves is not fun. If you don’t want to raise up a lazy slug, give them jobs to do. This will teach your child responsibility. They will become self sufficient when they live on their own. Most young children want to be around their parents. Use this opportunity to teach them a skill. Many kids grow up and transfer these skills into money (ie. mechanic, plumbing, lawn care, sewing, etc.)