Family Time

Family Time

One of the most important things to come out of this season in our history, is more family time. Anytime kids get to hang with their parents it is a win. Parents don’t have to be perfect, just available. This is how secure attachments are formed for life. Parents who talk to their child and ask them questions about their day or just spend time with them are building emotional bank accounts that will one day garner huge returns. The lifelong dividends children reap are from talking to their parents are innumerable.

One of the dividends is that their child’s vocabulary will contain more words. Parents who talk to their children and listen to their answers go to school with 3,000 to 5,000 more words than children who aren’t spoken with by caring adults. Parents are modeling dialogue by asking questions and waiting for responses. Also, if your child can respond with a complete sentence, the dialogue has added complexity.

The second benefit includes children and parents sharing age-appropriately failures and celebrating wins. Every parent who can be transparent about struggles and admit having a hard time with something in their past becomes a relatable and trusted confidant. Being approachable is what children need to feel like they can trust you with their mistakes or difficulties. Children learn how to fix their faults and work through tough things by watching their parents grapple with issues.

The third benefit of family time is the importance of tradition or rituals. Family nights are valuable for building new traditions, for example,Wingstop Wednesdays. It is a favorite of our family in which we get wings on Wednesdays from Wingstop. It started when my son was in high school and we would go out to eat once a week wherever he decided. I wanted him and I to have a special time away from the house just to catch up and talk about what was happening in his world. Now, while we wait for carry out, it has evolved into talking about who he should draft for his NFL Football Fantasy team that week. Every child wants to feel liked as well as loved, and this was a way I could give him individual time and make him feel like the most important person in the world. Every family can create their own traditions or rituals.

Finally, the last benefit of quality family time is creativity. Children who watch TV or game all the time, are losing their creative edge. Being forced to create games or use imagination is important to be a child.

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