September is finally here, and we can all agree that everyone is firmly back at school. Whether you’re the proud parent of a nervous freshman or an excited kindergartener, you’re probably feeling the scheduling pinch that comes with the start of a new school year.
As the years go by, it sure seems like the stakes for our kids just get higher and higher. With increased testing requirements, heftier homework loads, and more after-school activities, you might be wondering when you’ll ever see your kids. It can be hard to find quality time to spend together as a family when so many slots are filled on your calendar. But it’s true that kids whose parents and caregivers spend quality time with them are happier, more confident, and do better in school.
September’s theme at RoosterFin Games is Back to School, and today we’re gonna give you a few tips and pointers on how to protect your family time despite the back to school frenzy.
- Keep it Simple
Parenting and mentoring young kids have never been easy tasks. But modern living seems rife with new and unique pressures for caregivers. You might be feeling pressured, thinking that you have to make memorable, quality family time a big event. Take back your family time from the marketers. You don’t need a trip to Disney World to bond with your kids.
Recent studies show that children benefit the most from the quiet moments that comprise day-to-day, ordinary family life, not big, structured activities. So, make the most of what time you already have.
How does this look?
If you’re feeling disconnected from your children and you seem like you’ve become a chauffeur service, use the time spent commuting to open up a line of dialogue with your children, or just act silly. Put on a radio station that your child likes and have fun making up the words to the song.
Some kids aren’t talkers, and that’s okay. If they are though, make the most of commuting time with your children by asking open-ended questions that could prompt them to share what’s going on in their world with you.
- Who’s your favorite teacher so far?
- What class do you wish they’d offer in school?
- What’s your favorite game?
- What do you wish we could do more as a family?
Asking questions that can’t be answered with a yes or a no are an excellent way to break the ice and foster social interaction. These types of questions can give you a good insight into your child’s personality, hopes, and fears. When can you use the open-ended questions strategy during the busy school year?
- Commuting to and from school and after-school activities
- While helping your kids with their homework or school projects
- While cooking dinner together
- During chores
While it’s true that the school year is a hectic and busy time for most families, you can still maximize the time you do get with your children to strengthen your bond.
Sometimes it’s okay to be silent with your child. If they are going through a difficult time, just being present with them can send a powerful message of love and support.
- Plan Simple and Stress-free Weekend Activities
If your kids are older, their weekday evenings are probably filled to the brim with extracurriculars and homework. You may even have to work late and don’t get to see them much during the week. This can put a severe crimp in your family time, so you’ll want to make the most of the weekends. Setting aside time on the weekends to play games together can relieve the pent-up stress from the busy school and workweek. And studies show that kids who play games with their families have healthy confidence levels.
Our featured game for the back to school month of September is Monkeys Up. This game isn’t just fun; it’s also educational. When you play a game like Monkeys Up, your kids don’t just get to exercise their brains. They also get to build memories and strengthen their bond with you. Monkeys Up has won several awards for it’s educational and entertaining value, too.
The school year is an incredibly hectic time for parents and kids alike. But it doesn’t have to cause a distance to form between you and your child. Use what time you do have during the week to be present with your child and make the most of your weekends together by playing fun, educational games.