Doesn’t everyone love Spring? Sure it can be messy, rainy and sometimes cold, but mostly Spring is exciting because things are growing again and Summer is just around the corner. Face it, there’s excitement in the air during this season. So why not harness that excitement and spend One on One time with your kids in some “Springtime” ways.
One of the best and easiest ways to deepen your relationship with your children is to spend One on One Time together. This practice of regularly spending time with only one child, builds trust, confidence and security into your child’s life. And it’s so easy! Here are some great ideas to get you started on your Springtime One on One Time.
When my kids were young the local Dairy Queen was closed for the winter. So it was always an exciting day when it opened up for the first time in the spring. We even placed bets on what day the DQ would open. Is there a restaurant near you that is seasonal? Watch for their first opening day and make it an outing with your child.
If you don’t have a seasonal restaurant nearby, check out the local bakeries, or delis. See if they have any Springtime treats that they make just during this time of year. Remember, the goal is to spend some time together bonding, so put away the devices and really be present to your child.
The Academy Awards are coming up soon. The Oscars have been around since 1927. That’s a lot of Best Picture movie awards! If your family loves to watch movies, why not look over the list of all the winning pictures and make a list of ones that you would like to see? Spend time with just one child at a time picking movies and talking about why they would like to see them. You’ll be surprised at how much you’ll learn about their interests!
Once the lists are made, schedule family nights when you can watch the shows. It’ll be fun to see if they’re as entertaining as your thought. If the springtime weather is warm enough you could even have movie night outside!
Did you know that the clouds are different each season? Springtime clouds are more puffy. This makes them fun to look at and to imagine different shapes, animals or even storytelling. A great One on One time activity is to take a Cloud Walk with the purpose of finding things in the clouds. Let your imaginations go wild and see who can come up with the most unique cloud idea.
You could extend this to include taking pictures of the clouds so that you can share your story with the rest of the family. Or watch the cloud as it moves across the sky and see if it changes shape to become something brand new.
You’ve seen the TV commercials where they show professional sidewalk art, right? Who wouldn’t love to have that talent! But sidewalk art can start in your home too! Buy a container of sidewalk chalk and spend time with your child creating your own masterpieces on your driveway or sidewalk. Don’t forget to take pictures of the art and the artist!
This could even develop into an ongoing art project. After the next rain, start over with some new designs. Or recruit the neighbors to create art on their driveways as well. Soon you’ll have an art gallery right outside your door.
Are you an adventurous eater? Is your child or teen? Grocery stores are full of all kinds of unique foods that I’ve never even heard of before. It would be easy to take a trip to the store with the goal of finding a new food that neither of you have tried and bring it home to eat. Spending time in the store with just this one task could be really fun!
Once you’re home, you can look into ways to prepare your new food and plan how you’ll test it out. Whether you love it or hate it, this will be an activity you’ll both remember. You may even like it so much that it becomes a regular outing for your One on One Time.
You’ve Got Mail
Don’t you love getting cards in the mail? And a letter is even better! One on One time with your child and you each writing a letter to a friend or relative is time well spent. If you’d rather send a greeting card, you can get some inexpensive ones at the local Dollar Stores. Or, better yet, you can make a card yourself.
Sending mail to friends and relatives is very rewarding. When you sit down to write, you can help your child think of things to write about. Help them to tell about their life and to ask questions. Often you’ll get a letter in return.
Springtime and gardening go hand in hand. Even if you don’t have a green thumb, you could help your child start plants indoors with the hopes of planting them outside when the weather warms. Seeing your seeds sprouting is a rewarding experience. And you just might be helping them develop a new hobby.
Springtime always reminds us of renewal and new life. Take time this spring to renew your connection with your child or teen. These easy activities help you relate and create fun memories. It may seem like a simple thing, but often the simple things make the biggest impact. You got this!
One on One Time: Spring Ideas
By Lisa Reichelt, M.Ed., Parent Coach