Have you finally decided that the television and the video games must be turned off and it is time to spend time with the kids but you don’t know what to do? Great! This is the start to some long needed family bonding and maybe even some physical activity. So let’s get started.
If you want to start the family off slowly and don’t want to tear them too far away from the electronics at first, consider the old adage “If you can’t beat them join them”. Join in with your kids playing video games. Have them teach you their favorite game or set up a family tournament to compete against each other.
If you want to try and sneak some physical activity in there consider purchasing a Wii. The Wii comes with many games that you have to actually move most of your body to be able to play the game. This could be the start of physical activity that actually gets your family out of the house.
When it is time to turn off all electronics, consider an old fashioned board game. To get your family interested take them to the store and let them pick out the games. Then everyone will get to play something they are interested in, instead of you picking out the game and forcing them to participate.
Neighborhood Scavenger Hunts
This activity can take the form of two separate games as you walk with your family around the neighborhood. For the younger kids it can be played as an “I Spy” game. If you are not familiar with this, the first player selects something that they see and says the phrase “I spy with my little eye”. They finish the phrase with a clue to help the other players guess what they chose. The player that guesses gets to pick the object next.
For the older kids it can be in the form of a car scavenger hunt. You and your kid look around the neighborhood (without touching) and discuss the different cars. Your child gets to describe and point out the type of vehicle, the colors and the accessories that they want want to have and you can point out the ones that you would like to have. You will find that by looking and pointing out the different vehicles that you will both learn about each other. It may even lead to conversations about other topics.
Pack a meal and your family and head to a park for a old fashioned picnic. It will give all of you something new to experience and a new surrounding to enjoy. If you have older kids take some sports equipment to play around with, it will do all of you good to play around and get some activity. If you have younger kids, find a park with a playground and go play on it after you eat.
There are so many things that you can do with your kids beyond the normal day to day contact that you have with them. Take some time out of your busy schedule and go have fun with them. Time goes by so fast and before you know it you will be scrambling to find things to do with your grandkids.