Follow these tips to help strengthen your family.
Today’s families face greater challenges than families of years ago. Family time can build strong family values, healthy relationships, and resilient family members.
Families that work together, eat together, talk together, and play together can better weather the storms that families will face.
Here are a few tips to help encourage quality family time:
1. Quality family time together in doing great activities such as games, hiking, reading, playing outdoors and visiting family and friends.
2. Meal time is family time. Families who eat 3-5 meals together a week have stronger relationships, kids who do better in school, and avoid risky behaviors. Plan simple meals where family members can assist with cooking and meal planning.
3. Take time for weekly family meetings where family members can communicate about emotions, family issues, family finance, family plans, and upcoming events. Make sure all family members have a chance to communicate and share.
4. Build a family crest that illustrates your family values. When children understand what is important to the family, they can incorporate these values into their lives.
5. Encourage a routine that schedules homework and reading time, limiting TV, video games, and computer time.
6. Share household responsibilities. Encourage all family members to have some responsibilities that help family members. Teamwork builds pride in each family member doing their part.
7. Show love and caring to all members. Share the great things family members do. Have a bulletin board, give “love notes”, and always praise the good things you want your children to do.
8. Keep spousal relationships strong. Parents need to keep their relationship strong and be sturdy role models to their children. Weekly date nights help parents focus on and enjoy one another.
This article was written by Carolyn Washburn, Extension Professor, Washington County