Spending quality time with your little ones is very important. But how can you differentiate between quality and quantity? Well, if you are even spending an hour with your child in a day and both of you are engaged in an activity that is nurturing and encourages the child’s growth in one way or another, that is quality time. Because simply sitting alongside your kid as they play around with toys and you read the newspaper is not enough. Active participation and interest from both parties are crucial.
So, the next time you have a few extra minutes on your hands, you can make use of these tips to bond with your children:
Look for one on one time together
When you are spending one on one time with your child, you are essentially making them the focus of your attention, and that is very important. This time can look like going out to run errands, watching a movie, or simply having a conversation about the day’s or week’s events as your child eats or draws. This gives you the opportunity to get to know your child as they grow and understand if and when they need any help or support.
Reading a poem or a short story together is a wonderful way to instill the love of words and literature in your child as well. As they get older, this can take the form of exchanging book reviews, sharing favorite posts, etc. One interesting game to play is to ask your child to give you any five random words, and you can spin a story out of them.
Finish chores together
Children are always eager to see your work and to help you out as well. You can assign them tasks according to their abilities. Play some peppy music to make things more exciting, sing songs together, or exchange stories about the week. This helps you both connect over a task. The child will also get to know how to do things around the house, thus helping in their growth and development process as well.
Take care of someone or something together
Maybe you have another younger baby, a pet, or a plant in the house. Letting your child help out in taking care of the responsibilities that come with them is a great idea. Thus, folding the baby’s clothes, walking the dog, or watering the plants together are such examples.
Have at least one meal together every day
Dinner time together as a family is one of the best ways in which everyone at the table can bond together. You can start by asking for help in setting the table, bringing the plates, glasses, and spoons, etc. As everyone settles down, this can be a good chance to learn manners and customs as well. Children learn a lot from observing and listening – and looking at the adult/s on the table talk and converse teaches them a lot. If you are having breakfast together, you can go over the day’s events – wish them luck for a competition, sign any tests, etc. A happy conversation in the morning with the caregivers greatly impacts a child will feel as they start a new day.
Have a bedtime routine
Bedtime routines for you and your child can be whatever you want them to be. Be as creative as possible! It can be doing some light yoga or meditation, brushing together, or reading a story or a poem together. And of course, you may also show affection through a hug or a kiss, etc.
Go for walks
Walks are yet another wonderful time for the kids to spend time with you. An hour in the park can teach your child so much about the nature around them – the trees, animals, birds, etc. They are sure to ask you questions about what they see and experience outside, and answering such questions with patience and enthusiasm goes a long way. You can also tell the child about things they might not have noticed or share interesting facts – all these things help in the growth of the child’s brain. Moreover, visits to the park, walking around and playing on the swings will always be fun and happy memories to look back at for you and your child.