Between the endless list of groceries, chores and busy schedules, parents often forget to give quality time to their children. According to Witham (1992)1, “Children spell Love…TIME.” The author in his book on parenting emphasizes on the fact that along with nutritional care, proper education and other commodities of life, parents need to give adequate time and attention to children for their proper development. During the hustle and bustle of life, parents often don’t realize that their children are growing up way too fast. Witham said that it is impossible to seize the time, but parents can make a million memories by spending time with their kids.
Ways to Spend Time with Kids
According to Rotbart (2012)2, it is very important for parents to realize that they are not giving enough time to their young ones. The author said that parenting meditation is the key to successful parenting and time management. Parenting meditation is a practice in which parents have to force themselves to focus on their little ones. The study highlighted that parents should put in efforts to make a bond with their children and win their trust.
Here is a list of 6 easy and fun ways to help parents make the most of the time with their children:
1. Take Fun Walks
According to Cushman (2013)3, children love to explore, so one of the best ways to grab their attention and spend time with them is to take fun walks. Parents should make a routine, like taking kids to evening walks not only decompresses them gently but also allows parents to share special moments with children. Cushman suggested that in order to add a fun element to even walks, make it “pajama walks.” One fun way to do so is get the kids dressed in their bedtime pj’s and take them to walk right before their bedtime. Most parents allow children to watch TV in the evening, so evening walks not only allow parents to spend time with their kids, but also allow children to do something productive instead of wasting their time watching cartoons.
2. Bribe with Ice-cream and Candies
According to McKay (2011)4, children love ice cream, candies and snacks. So, one of the best ways to encourage children to do something is to bribe them with their favorite snacks. The author said that forcing a child to do something might make him/her stubborn, but giving them candies, chocolates or small gifts as reward encourages them to do better in the future. The practice of giving toys, candies and snacks to children from time to time not only keeps them happy, but also strengthens the bond between parents and children.
3. Bedtime Traditions
This might sound old, but children love bedtime stories. McKay said that young children don’t like going to bed, but establishing bedtime traditions not only helps parents in maintaining discipline among children but also gives children something to look forward to. Parents should also keep in mind that telling meaningful stories to children is the best ways to deliver values to them.
4. Fix Things Together
Rotbart said that during early years of childhood, kids find it more interesting to break things instead of playing with them. Parents should keep in mind the fact that stopping them from doing so might discourage their spirit of exploring things. So a better way to improve their learning abilities is to fix things with them. This will not only teach them to fix their broken toys, but also allows parents to spend some fun time with their little ones.
5. Capture Moments
Nugent (2013)5 said that one of the best ways to relive the precious moments with your children is to maintain picture albums. Parents should take a lot of pictures of their children to make memories. The author said that take “selfies” with kids and show it to them, young kids love posing for the camera and being photographed.
6. Fill It with Music
Nugent also said that children love to sing and dance. So fill it with rhymes, songs and poems. The author also said that according to recent research, music not only improves the learning ability of children but also enhances their memory. So try teaching them ABC or counting through music and they will remember it for the rest of their lives.
1. Witham AP. (1992). The ABC's of Parenting.
2. Rotbart HA. (2012). How To Spend More Quality Time With Your Child.
3. Cushman J. (2013). Cherish the Moments With Your Children.
4. McKay T. (2011). How to make the most of time with your kids.
5. Nugent C. (2013). 5 Ways to Get More Special Moments With Your Kids.
Christie Hunter is registered clinical counselor in British Columbia and co-founder of Theravive. She is a certified management accountant. She has a masters of arts in counseling psychology from Liberty University with specialty in marriage and family and a post-graduate specialty in trauma resolution. In 2007 she started Theravive with her husband in order to help make mental health care easily attainable and nonthreatening. She has a passion for gifted children and their education. You can reach Christie at 360-350-8627 or write her at christie - at - theravive.com.