Spending quality time with our children is extremely important for their overall development and happiness. Unfortunately, today the time we spend with our children has become very precious; on one hand our kids are burdened with their homework and school activities and on the other hand parents too are forced to spend more and more time outside their home - due professional commitments, traffic congestion, and distanced workplaces.
Child Psychologist Shivani Misri Sadhoo shares that time spent with kids doesn’t need to be elaborate or long, JUST make it “qualitative”. She shares some practical tips on how we can maximize the time with have with our children.
1. Be mentally present with your child
Sometimes we can be physically at home but mentally our minds are miles away. We become distracted at home because we bring home stress from the outside world, so much so that when we’re with our children, we get unwarily irritable, angry and bored. Remember - children have the ability to sense whether their parents are really paying attention to them or not. That is why - whatever it takes, it is good to clear our minds and hearts of our work stresses before we spend time with our kids. This way, we will find ourselves more patient, more cheerful, more giving and certainly more attentive to our children.
2. Play Their Games
If your child loves to play games consoles then learn how to play games, which you child loves to play and play with them. You can ask them to teach you the game and rules. This way you child will develop a belief that you care for what they care for plus it’s an excellent way to spend quality time with your kids. Remember if you’re allowing your child to play video games AVOID any kind of violent games. Instead encourage them to play educational or real-world activity games like – tennis, bowling, football, skiing and also set time limits, lest their virtual realities take over their reality.
3. Encourage storytelling
Story telling is an excellent activity to spend quality time with your child and also it’s a stepping stone activity for developing book reading habit in them. What you can do is – research & purchase good books for your kid and enhance your storytelling capability.
4. Involve your child in household tasks
Remember children love to help their parents, condition that you involve them intelligently so that they can find going grocery shopping with you more interesting than watching cartoons. Try to delegate responsibilities and let them do some task independently – like you can tell them to find 5 grocery items from the list and put them in the cart (instead of giving direct commands like - pick this from that rack. Similarly, while preparing dinner table you can ask your child to mix the salad with salt and seasoning.