When our kids get older, it becomes harder and harder to connect with them. But as parents, it’s especially important for us to continue to put in the extra effort it takes to cultivate relationships with our tweens and teens. Check out my top ten ideas for engaging your teen in activities you’ll both enjoy:
Learn a new skill as a team. Decide together what you’d like to learn and go for it. Cooking, photography, music, and art classes are regular offerings in most communities. Or learn how to kayak, play golf, or tennis. Really feeling adventurous? Learn a foreign language together!
Play a game. Sure traditional board games are great, but teens are hooked on their electronics and there are lots of fun games that you can enjoy with them. For instance, play a game of ‘Words With Friends’ on your smart phones. Start a two player game on a tablet. Even see what those video games of theirs are all about. I promise, it will be fun!
Complete a project. If you’re like me, then you probably have a lot of projects around your house that need completing! Whether you wash the cars, paint a room, or work in the yard together, there’s a lot of satisfaction (and bonding) that comes from finishing a project together. Or pick a DIY Pinterest inspired activity or craft and work with your teen to get it completed.
Share your hobbies. Think about the things you like to do. Now share those interests with your kids. It could be taking them to your painting class, letting them make a scrapbook with you, or bringing them along to set up your fantasy football team.
Learn about their hobbies too. Have them play some of their favorite music for you and tell you about why they like it. Watch a movie they love together. Then let them tell you about their other interests and see where you can find common ground.
Have them teach you. Are you lost when it comes to social media? When someone asks you to upload or download something do you even know what they are talking about? Well, guess what? You teen knows all these things. Have them give you some tutorials. You’ll know more and be impressed with how technologically savvy they are! [Read more...]