5 Better Bonding Tips

10:40 AM

When you have more than one kid, it can be tricky making one-on-one time for each child. While it’s important for your child to realize they are part of a strong family unit, it’s also crucial for them to know that they are unique and special to you as an individual.

Finding that perfect balance of individual and family togetherness isn’t easy when you have a larger family, a demanding career, an infant who is breastfeeding or if you’re a single parent.

Here are some ideas to help you give each child the one-on-one time they deserve.

1. Get Active

Sports provide the perfect one-on-one bonding time. To make sure you avoid excluding anyone who wants to go with you, try to pick a sport each child likes.
If you have a kid who loves basketball, challenge her to a game of PIG. It will only take a few minutes, but the warm feelings your kid will have from getting you all to herself will last forever.
For your other child, find a sport he likes and pencil that in too. Whether it’s throwing the Frisbee around or hitting some balls on the tennis court, he’ll be getting physical activity and all the attention he needs.

2. Volunteer to Chaperone a School Field Trip

If you don’t have a baby, ask your child’s teacher if you can chaperone the next school field trip they take. If you do have a baby, see if a family member or friend would be able to babysit for the day.

Field trips are the perfect opportunity for one-on-one time. Your kids will get to spend all day with you and you’ll get to see what their life away from you is like. You’ll get a whole new insight to what they tell you about their days at school, from what their teacher is like to which of their friends are good listeners and which aren’t.

3. Go to a Park

Whether you’re pushing your young child on a swing or simply strolling around while talking, a park gives you the perfect opportunity for some one-on-one time.

Being around such a relaxed atmosphere will really open the lines of communication between you and your child.

4. Talk While You’re Driving Your Child Around

If you have a teenager, you don’t only have to contend with your busy schedule, but you’ll also have to work around his. When neither one of you has much time to spend alone together, you have to take advantage of any time you have.

When your child is in extracurricular activities that require you to drive him back and forth between home and the school, you should make sure the radio is off and your child isn’t playing with his phone. Then you can take advantage of the time alone to talk about your child’s day or anything else that’s on your mind.

5. Extend Their Bedtime

Give every kid a night of the week in which they get to stay up 20 or 30 minutes later than the rest of the kids in the family. That extra time is reserved just for you and your child to spend together.

The beauty of this plan is that it works even when you don’t have a babysitter. Because you aren’t physically leaving the house, it’s a great chance for overworked single parents to spend individual time with each of their children.

Whether you watch your child’s favorite show, play a card game or just sit there and talk, your child will love having his own special night.

You’ll Both Feel Better Because of the Extra Time

Kids want to feel special and loved, but they aren’t the only ones who will get something valuable out of this one-on-one time. You’ll be happier too, because you won’t feel so guilty about how little time you’re able to carve out for your kids.

Parenting can feel so rushed and frantic that it’s hard to stop and smell the roses once in awhile. By finding time for your kids, you’ll feel more in control of your schedule and you’ll be more confident in your relationship with your child.

With a little bit of planning, you’ll get to know each individual child better in just a few weeks. Years from now, you’ll both remember how much you enjoyed getting to spend that extra time together.

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