Because schedules are so busy when you have kids, you have to be insistent on having a regular Family Night. When parents and kids connect every week by spending time together and doing something fun, important quality time will be experienced by all. When it comes to considering what to do on Family Night, let your creativity flow…
1. Cook dinner
Something as simple as having everyone in the kitchen talking, clattering pans and stirring bring you all closer.
2. Take a walk
When the family walks together, kids and parents have the opportunity to talk about their lives—what’s important or what they’re looking forward to.
3. Try something new
Have you considered trying something new that your teen is interested in? Like taking a hip-hop dance class together… you’ll have plenty of laughs.
Consider volunteering monthly as a family at a local charitable organization. Distribute food at the local food bank or help serve meals at the mission.
5. Read together
Regardless of the ages of your kids, great adventure books will draw you together. Take turns reading pages, making appropriate voices for the quotes, for even more fun.
6. Go to the Health Club
If you’ve got teens, consider going to the Health Club for Family Night. Modeling regular exercise is a great example to set. Afterward, have a healthy dinner together.
7. Play a board game
Play games like Pictureka, Taboo, Guesstures, and Pictionary. Games that involve quick sketching, guessing words, or acting out something are fun for kids and parents alike.
8. Give kids a choice
Let each child plan what the family will do on one Family Night a month. You’ll be surprised by what the children come up with to spend time together.
9. Go to the theater
A fantastic way to introduce your kids to culture, music and great entertainment is to take them to a theater performance. Whether it’s a traveling show or your local theatre’s quarterly performance, there’s no better way to spend a Family Night.
10. Play music together
Put on a family concert once in a while. Can you think of anything more fun to compel kids to practice? If parents play, that’s cool, too, as their ability to make music sets a great example for the children.
11. Bike ride
Before dark, embark on a bike-riding adventure. Explore your neighborhood or the one a few blocks over. Parents can take turns pairing off with each child for a few minutes of one-on-one time.
12. Prepare and dine on exotic food
It’s a learning experience when parents provide info about the culture while cooking and dining. If you’ve visited the country where the foods originate, tell stories to your kids about your travels there.
13. Let kids give speeches
Believe it or not, this one is fun and interesting. After having dinner together, have kids take a turn giving a verbal report they’re about to give or already gave at school. Family members can praise the child who’s presenting his report.
14. Group story-telling
Start a story and rotate around the group, having each family member add a little to the story until everyone has had 3 turns. The last person to add to the story has to end it. This is a fascinating process that parents can use as teaching moments.
15. Clean house
Feel free to set a timer so you only work for 30 minutes or an hour max. Afterward, have a sumptuous treat or just hang out together and relax. Talk about how much each child accomplished and thank them for their efforts.
16. Do a family project
Whether it’s repainting an old chest of drawers or washing and cleaning the car, let kids make their own special mark on the project. The task will get done quickly and you’ll have plenty of time to gather in the family room to converse later.
17. Visit a fancy restaurant
It’s a fun experience to introduce your kids to the finer things in life. Everyone dresses up and goes out to have a delicious meal together. These types of experiences enrich your lives and introduce kids to different lifestyle elements.
18. Tour a museum
Take advantage of local museums during one of your Family Nights. If necessary, begin Family Night before 5:00 p.m. to squeeze in a museum visit. You’ll have lots to talk about together at dinner.
19. Pack a picnic dinner
Have kids gather chips, soda and paper plates while you make sandwiches. Then, drive to your local park to dine alfresco. If you’re lucky enough to live near a national park, your family can have an adventure in the great outdoors.
Although this idea may sound a little crazy, why not put on music for 30 minutes so your family can dance, dance, dance? Let kids pick the tunes. Think of the excess energy dancing burns. Dance with one another for a wonderful family night.
21. Do art
Are there any budding artists in your family? If so, gather some supplies and plan to have everyone do art after dinner. Whether it’s painting, drawing or working with modeling clay, you’ll all have fun creating art.
22. Have hobby time
Does your teenage son love to golf? If so, have a Golf Night. If your 10-year-old daughter loves to make jewelry, why not have everyone try that one Family Night? Before selecting what hobby to do together, consider kids’ ages and costs of supplies.
23. Discuss current events
While preparing and having dinner together, parents can bring up something that happened in the news. Ask kids what they think about it. Present interesting questions and ideas to provoke thought and encourage conversation with your children.
24. Let kids prepare and serve the meal
If you’ve got at least one child that’s old enough to handle making sandwiches and preparing a salad, see what your kids come up with to serve the family for dinner. Leave setting the table up to them. Most kids will love this one.
25. Share ghost stories by the fireplace
In the cool fall or chilly winter, gather the family around the fireplace after dinner for hot cocoa and ghost stories.
Make up some fun stories or let your kids do the telling. If people run out of stories, have a book nearby that’s age-appropriate for all the children.
Whether you have a Family Night that’s intriguing, full of fun, educational, or a little bit of hard work, your children will look forward to that night of sharing with great anticipation.
Your kids will truly enjoy Family Night and so will you!
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