8 Tips for Creating Quality Time with Your Kids
You may have read the trending Washington Post article Making time for kids? Study says quality trumps quantity.
“In fact, it appears the sheer amount of time parents spend with their kids between the ages of 3 and 11 has virtually no relationship to how children turn out, and a minimal effect on adolescents, according to the first large-scale longitudinal study of parent time to be published in April in the Journal of Marriage and Family. The finding includes children’s academic achievement, behavior and emotional well-being.”
Well, doesn’t that come as a sigh of relief for all of us busy parents? Buh-bye guilt!
I surveyed Best Mom Products fans and parents to find out how they incorporate quality time into their family. Here are our tips…
1. High’s and Low’s of Each Day
Ask your children on the drive home from school or at night before they go to bed what their highs and lows were of the day. This is quality time and they have to think about certain incidents which leaves it open for conversation and you immediately know if anything bad happened and can address it.
2. Tune out of technology, put your phone away when you are at home.
My New Years resolution this year was to take all social networks of my iphone. I found that even being home, I would grab my phone and check it. Do I really need to know what is happening on FB and look at photo’s of my friends kids while I’m at home with my kids. No. Be present.
3. Look them in the eyes when they talk.
It is as simple as that. Let them know you are listening to them and not distracted. And bedtime snuggles.
4. 15 Magic Minutes
Each night before they go to bed …. let them choose one activity … a puzzle, a board game, cards and set the timer so they know it is then bedtime. Try the app My Gnome on the Roam for daily activities.
5. 1:1 Time
To get quality 1:1 time and cut down on sibling rivalry, each parent can switch off putting a child to bed and reading to them and/or them reading to you.
6. Chores Together
Give them a small piece of the job that they can do around the house to feel included. Sorting laundry is a good one for younger children or sweeping. It won’t be perfect but that’s not the point.
7. Ask them Questions
I ask my kids what their opinion is about various things (news items for my 14 year old, less intense things for my 11 and 8 year old daughters) They love getting asked what they think–and knowing it matters.
8. Dinner Together
I always find our best time is having family dinner together whenever possible…no phones or distractions. We do our best, worst and funniest of the day and everyone gets to choose a few songs they want to hear on a playlist.
More tips available from 11 mom entrepreneurs in the new book Odd Mom Entrepreneur Out available on Amazon.com.