Easy Ways to Connect with Your Kid at Home on a School Break
As the holidays approach, parents are thinking about their kid’s upcoming week long breaks from school and many are panicking. What do you do with a kid when they’re off for an entire week or more?
There are the usual things like playing with friends, movies, etc… but wouldn’t it be nice to actually connect with your kid?
During the school year, most days seem to be spent rushing around: getting ready for school/work, hurrying home to make dinner, dashing off to one activity or another. Holiday breaks can be a nice opportunity to take it a little slower and spend more quality time with your child.
As my tween is about to head into her Thanksgiving break, I’m compiling a few things for us to do. Here’s my list of the easiest, low stress ways to connect with your kid on a school break.
Cook – This is my number one go to activity because of the learning potential. Not only does cooking or baking with your kid reinforce the skills needed to make a meal, kids of all ages can learn something or reinforce existing skills like measuring, following directions and reading nutritional values. While cooking together, you also teach your child about effective communication.
Crafts – Getting crafty with a kid can be tough for those of us that are control freaks, I know. I get it. Regardless, one of the best ways to reinforce fine motor skills and concentration, while also allowing for some fantastic no pressure chatting. It’s amazing the things that will come out of my kid’s mouth when her hands are busy.
Chores – Yup, things still need to get done during the week and cleaning or getting things done around the house provides another opportunity to connect with your kid. Just remember to keep it fun, stay together and resist the urge to turn into a drill sergeant. Some examples of chores to do with your kid are weeding, dusting, hanging holiday decorations or bathing the dogs.
Culture – Spend a few hours in a museum or library. There is something special in the air at those quiet places that allows for real connection. Time spent together in either of these two types of places is a low cost, or free, way to expand your child’s mind. Connect with your kid on another level.
Volunteer – This doesn’t fit my C word scheme but it’s too good to leave out. One of the best volunteering experiences my kid and I have had was spending a few hours working at a food bank. At a food bank, they sort and check all the donated food that then gets distributed to food pantries. Volunteering is a character builder for anyone, but especially children and teens. It opens the door for conversations on gratitude, social issues and the importance of being a citizen that gives back.
Don’t let your kid waste his or her holiday break in front of the TV or computer. Use the time off to your advantage to connect with your kid.
How do you connect with your kid during their holiday breaks? What do you have planned?