This subject hit me… I came across this in looking for blogging ideas. Things you should always do with your children. I knew instantly what I would write about, even if it wasn’t what the initial person with the idea wrote about. Check out why this is an IMPORTANT topic.
So, when I came across writing about things you should do with your children there were several things that popped into my mind almost instantly. And that is what I am going to share today!
In raising our kids, we go through the whole thing of “are we doing enough”, “are we doing too much”, what do I tell my kids”, “what do I let them do”, “how much of this do I explain to them”, etc.
And this blog post is going to be sharing MY thoughts on these things. These are the things WE have done with our children. And because of my husband’s profession, we have been exposed to the knowledge of human behaviors… good and bad. So this has worked for us. I am not telling you this is the absolute best thing. You need to discuss things with your spouse before doing any of these things with your kids, just to make sure you are both on the same page!
Things You Should Always Do with Your Children
- Tell them the truth. This seems a little weird but think about it. Think about maybe how you were raised or that one friend that tells their kids something screwy- like a stork brings a newborn baby. Of course at different ages you may have to simplify their truth quite a bit. Like staying on the baby thing- maybe something like when mommies and daddies love each other very much, a baby can grow inside the mommies belly, and then it will be born. Usually this will suffice the young mind. But you may have to add more info as they grow. Make sure you never have to CHANGE your story though! If you have to change your story, you may start to lose credibility with your kids. And you DO NOT want to do that.
- Discuss things you see and hear. So you are going to grandma’s one day and on the radio you hear a news story about terrorists. Then, your child asks what a terrorist is. This is a good time to talk to them (again age appropriate discussion) about what they see and hear! Try to talk to them honestly but also reassuring them (in scarier discussions) that our country, our police force, and/or YOU will keep them safe. If you do not discuss things with your kids, they will hear things from other kids at school and their teacher or another child might explain it in a way that would scare them. Especially if you brush it off and tell them it’s not real or whatever.
- Use things as teaching moments. Don’t be afraid to point things out and teach your child on the spot about being safe or being a good kid. Sometimes your kids will also point things out themselves and ask “why do THEY get a snack” or “why do THEY get to do that”. They can even be the embarrassing ones, where your child points out something on someone that makes your face turn several shades of RED. Again be truthful and discuss it! You may wait until you get to the car and explain that, maybe some people don’t have nice clothes like you have, then explain how maybe you can go through your closets and gather unused/unwanted clothes and donate them to a local clothes donation center or homeless shelter.
- Do good together/Compassion. Rolling off point number 3, doing good together is important. Especially in these times when our children are being raised in a pretty self-centered culture. We should be regularly doing good. Go through your closets and donate. Go through your home and donate. Bake cookies. Make a meal for someone. Mow your elderly neighbor’s yard. Shovel snow for people in your neighborhood that could slip and fall. Work at a food serving facility for the homeless. Teach your kids to keep an eye open for injustice. If they see someone who can’t pay for all of their food at the register at the grocery store, and you can help them, HELP THEM! Or if there is someone struggling with a heavy bag of dog food or large item, teach them to help! Even animals. Teach compassion for something that is helpless!
- Teach responsibility. This is something that is REALLY hard these days. As many people, even adults, blame others for the things that they need to take responsibility for themselves. Ever hear ‘it’s not MY fault”? Stop that behavior, and talk them through things that actually ARE their fault because of a choice they made or something they actually did to cause something to happen. And SOMETIMES they need to actually see the consequences of their actions! This is a hard one as a parent but very valuable because we cannot raise children to adults thinking that their actions never have negative consequences! If you don’t do something you are responsible for doing, something bad can happen!
- Teach forgiveness. Forgiveness if hard. If someone has hurt you, in these times, kids are taught that you fight them, you ‘unfriend’ them, or you ridicule them. To forgive someone means we have to pardon an offense or wrongdoing. And that action isn’t natural! That’s why it not only needs to be taught, it needs to be modeled. The alternative to forgiveness is carrying that offense with us. And that offense will be a hatred or a stressor in our lives that we DO NOT NEED to carry around with us! Teaching forgiveness do not mean we forget, it means we no long hold that against them and throw it in their face every time we see them. If we do this, our lives can be a little more stress free.
These are just a few major things I think you should always do with your children. Again, not the end all be all of lists but it’s a good start, and possibly a good discussion starter for your home.
I hope this was helpful! Let me know what you would add to the list!
Thank you so much for stopping by today! I hope you were encouraged by this post, and I hope to see you visit again soon!