5 ACTIVITIES TO DO WITH YOUR TEEN

A good relationship is based on trust, security, and love. Nurturing these three values is essential to having a healthy relationship with your child. Even though your teen is becoming more involved in their relationships outside the family, it is still important for you to remain responsive to their needs and be there to guide and support them. You are your teen’s first teacher, and the relationship you have with them is the basis of his emotional and social development.[i]



Spending quality time with your teen and giving them positive attention doesn't have to be complicated or expensive. Here are 5 ways you can give your teen positive attention:


1. HAVE DINNER TOGETHER

If you're looking for an easy way to spend some time with your teenager, try making family dinner a non-negotiable part of your schedule. Not only is this a great time to catch up with your kids about what's going on in their lives, but researchers at the University of Montreal have discovered a link between family meals and physical and emotional wellbeing in children.[ii]


2. DRIVING TIME

Sometimes when our kids are teens we feel like we spend just as much time in the car taking them places as actually being at home. But that is actually a great time to talk about what is going on in their world. Teen boys especially do better with “side-by-side” instead of “face-to-face” communication. And there is no better place than the car to do just that.[iii]


3. HIKE, CAMP, AND/OR ROCK CLIMB

This definitely brings in the adventure component. Find a trail to hike or a camping place. If you are trained and have the proper equipment take them rock climbing. If not, find a local rock-climbing wall. There’s nothing like conquering a physical challenge together.[iv]


4. TAKE A NIGHTLY WALK AFTER DINNER

Burn off that meal and bond with your kids with one easy activity: a nightly walk. Walking together is not only a great way to get some exercise and enjoy an endorphin boost, it gives you a prime opportunity to talk about what's going on in your lives without it feeling forced.[v]


5. Schedule a Family Night

Set aside time for the entire family to spend time together. Whether you choose to play board games once a month or watch a movie once a week, make it a tradition. This can be important in building a quality relationship with your teen.[vi]


[i] Parent Tool Kit, Building Your Relationship with Your Teen, accessed 27 May 2020, < https://www.parenttoolkit.com/social-and-emotional-development/advice/relationships/building-your-relationship-with-your-teen> [ii] Best Life, 40 Ways to Bond with Your Teenage Kids, accessed 27 May 2020, <https://bestlifeonline.com/parent-teen-bonding/> [iii] Heat to Heart Homeschooling, 100 Relationship Building Ideas, Resources, and Activities for Families, accessed 27 May 2020, <https://hearttohearthomeschooling.com/100-relationship-building-for-families/> [iv] All Pro Dad, 10 Fun Things to do With Your Teens, accessed 27 May 2020, <https://www.allprodad.com/10-fun-things-to-do-with-your-teens/> [v] Best Life, 40 Ways to Bond with Your Teenage Kids, accessed 27 May 2020, <https://bestlifeonline.com/parent-teen-bonding/> [vi] Very Well Family, 10 Ways to Spend Quality Time with Your Teens, accessed 27 May 2020, < https://www.verywellfamily.com/ways-to-spend-quality-time-with-your-teen-2610997>

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