Today, most parents are busy with work while their children spend more hours in school. That’s why some families rarely have time to bond together. However, spending some time together as a family is important because it helps in building closeness among family members. It is something that will give you more opportunities to experience special moments as well as to get to know each other, most especially your kids.
You may plan on doing some bonding activities when you get the chance to have some time off from work, every weekend, or during the kids’ vacation from school. Or, you can also do simple bonding activities after work and school that will not require much of your time. To help you out, here are some ideas for family bonding activities.
1. Designate a Family Holiday
Family holidays are just like birthdays and conventional holidays. You can pack these days with unique traditions and special foods. It will be up to you on what holidays you’ll be celebrating. For example, you can have a “We Appreciate Daddy Day”. You can think of clever and unexpected ways to honor each family member. This is something that can certainly make each one of you feel loved.
2. Cook a Family Meal and Eat Together
The kitchen is a place where everyone in the family comes together to check out what mom’s cooking for the day. But cooking a family meal together is also a great bonding activity for the family. After cooking, it’s also important to eat together. Based on studies, children who dine often with the whole family eat more fruits and vegetables. They are also more willing to try new dishes and are less likely to experience depression as well as eating disorders.
3. Host a Family Sports Event
Playing sports is also a great bonding activity because through it, you can teach your children about playing by the rules, as well as losing or winning gracefully. When hosting a family sports event, you should think about the kinds of sports that would benefit your family dynamic and also the interests of your kids.
You can visit bowling alleys, golf courses, or indoor climbing wall. You can also try unfamiliar sports if you all would agree. Even if no one in your family is into sports, going out once in a while and doing some physical activities will give you a fun and healthy bonding time. It is also a great foundation of teamwork.
4. Create a Family Art
Making art together is also a great family bonding activity. You can create a collage or a scrapbook that contains family photos or mementos. You can also take it to the next level by painting a mural on the wall of your children’s playroom or your family room. After creating some arts, you can display them at home. These things are memorable and can be a lasting tribute for your family.
5. Have a Movie of the Week
Watching movies together is one of the usual bonding activities done by a family. But to make it more exciting, you and your kids can alternate in choosing the films to watch. You can also decorate the place where you’ll watch the movie to add some feels. Prepare some popcorn and get cozy together while laughing, crying, and learning together from the movies. After watching, you can all talk about what you’ve seen and the things that you’ve learned.
6. Go on a Nature Walk
It’s also a great idea for the whole family to go out and get close to nature once in a while. Since kids today and even adults are mostly engaged to their gadgets, you can all take a break from that even just for a day. Try to spend a relaxing time together with nature. Your whole family can stroll along a shoreline, down a wooded trail, or even in just a park. The view of trees, birds, and sky, as well as the feeling of breathing in fresh air will make you all feel relaxed.
7. Conduct Family Interviews
Visiting relatives such as grandparents, aunts, and uncles is also a great way to bond. To make your visit more interesting, you and your kids can conduct family interviews. Have your children ask their grandparents and other relatives stories about their childhood and other unforgettable experiences. You can make them use a voice recorder or a video recorder to capture the amazing stories and expressions.
More than being a fun bonding activity, the memories you’ve collected can be saved as a time capsule of family history. You can edit the clips into a slideshow which your whole family can watch from time to time.
8. Create a Family Garden
Gardening is not just a task for mom and dad, because the whole family can be involved in creating a beautiful garden at home. You can all plant a garden together and watch it grow and blossom day by day. Having a garden to take care of will teach your family about patience and perseverance.
9. Start a Family Book Club
Reading together is also a great way to bond and you can do it every day before sending the kids to bed. This bonding activity is best done when everyone in your family is old enough to read. You all can take turns in choosing a book. More than reading the books, you can also come up with questions to asks each other. It will make your discussions livelier. During vacations or holidays, you can also ask other relatives such as aunts, uncles, and cousins to join your family book club for a more fun discussion.
10. Allow the Kids to Plan Events for the Family
Family events can include beach trips, camping, picnics, and more. Most of the time, parents are the ones who plan these events. But to make it more exciting, you can let your kids plan them instead. Planning is also a great way for the whole family to bond. Teach your kids how to set a budget, gather maps, check weather reports, and more. Allowing them to do this task will make them feel trusted and independent. As a parent, you will also feel proud of them once you’re spending a wonderful day with them in the event that they planned.
There are certainly a lot of activities the whole family can do together. Family bonding activities don’t always have to be big and grand. Sometimes talking with each other, eating dinner together, and watching movies are enough. Just make sure that no matter how busy you all are, you always find time to bond once in a while.