In a world of hustle and bustle where everyone is running short of time for almost everything, there are limited family bonding sessions which involve all the family members. Personally, I’m a strong supporter of such bonding sessions.
I feel that once in a week, the entire family should get together and do something constructive and fun-filled. Perhaps fortnightly, if not once in a month, we should also get-together with our extended families to reconnect and share.
V works in the aerospace industry, and occasionally he has to travel or even work on weekends. That makes it difficult for us to organize something when I’ve to work on weekdays and Little Edison has school and enrichment classes.
For this special reason, we’ve decided to keep at least two days in a calendar month free so that all of us can be together. I grew up to believe that a family that can bond together will be a family that is united forever. My mom always told me, “Amazing things can happen when a family comes together to do things together.” Yes, it’s true!
Little Edison is now 5 years old. He’s an independent-thinking child with his own ideas, emotions, preferences and beliefs. Sometimes, I do feel that I’m losing the bond that we used to share when he was a little baby. But I keep reminding myself that it is still possible to maintain a strong bond with him while fostering his transition to childhood.
Here are my FIVE easy tips for bonding with our children – to share with you today:
1. Organize a trip
Field trips are particularly enjoyable to our boy. Playground, zoo, park, animal farm or nature preserve are good options for us, as compared to a long boring day at home. A family outing can encourage conversations, laughter and fond memories too.
Would you prefer that your child remember a day at home in front of the TV, or a day walking in the park with ice-cream and lots of fun?
2. Do something creative
If the weather does not permit outdoor, I’ll think of some crafty projects to do at home. Draw a picture, paint a birdhouse, colour the sticks, make a picture collage, or write a story and ask him to contribute to it. These simple creative activities help bonding with our children while creating a masterpiece that we’ll both treasure in the years to come.
3. Have a weekly one-to-one session
At least once a week, I’ll schedule half an hour of one-to-one conversation with Little Edison. That usually happens at night, before bed time. We’ll talk about our days, the good and the challenging things that are happening in our lives. It’s a good chance for me to understand how he feels about things around him, i.e. his teachers, his friends, his school, etc.
Bear in mind that we should keep an open line of conversation so our children know that they can always talk to us and consult us when they have a problem.
4. Be his teacher at home
Even when our boy is still in preschool, home education is important for fostering both good education and a strong parental bond. Every night, we have half an hour of study-time. Besides maintaining a strong bond between us, it’s also an important source of knowledge for Little Edison.
Helping our children with their homework not only allows us to spend time with them, but also allows us to see what they’re learning and how they’re performing academically. And don’t forget, our support and praise will go a long way in boosting their confidence in school.
5. Create a “Family Night”
It’s where the entire family participates in an activity. This can be as easy as a board game after dinner, an evening out at a fun family restaurant, or to go for a movie outing.
“Your family and your love must be cultivated like a garden. Time, effort, and imagination must be summoned constantly to keep any relationship flourishing and growing.” – Jim Rohn
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