Get Involved in Your Child's Activities
One of the best ways to get involved in your children's lives is to simply do things with them. Relationships are built around time and shared activities. Perhaps the hardest part is making sure you create time to do things with your kids.
We're here to help - below we've given you 5 easy tips on how to find activities to do with your kids and 4 ways to balance your work and family commitments so you can be available to get involved with your child. It makes a difference!
5 Ways to Get Involved in Your Child's Activities
- #1: Kids spell Love T-I-M-E: As a dad, your role as a provider is an important part of being a good father. Your kids will certainly appreciate the material benefits you provide, but what they will remember most is the time you spent just doing things with them. Your investment of 15 minutes shooting hoops before dinner, a half hour working on homework together, or a couple hours shopping on the weekend communicates to your son or daughter that you love him or her!
- #2: The Smallest Moments can have the Biggest Impact: President Barack Obama recorded a Public Service Announcement to the nation's fathers to encourage them to "take time to be a dad today." President Obama had some great suggestions for how dads can do just that. Watch his message and be encouraged - the small things you do have a big impact on your child's life.
- #3: Find out what your kids like to do - and then do it with them: If you're at a loss for what to do with your child, just ask them about what they like to do in their free time. Then, do those favorite activities together!
- #4: Learn from your child: What if you're not good at your child's favorite activities? That's a great opportunity for you to reverse roles and let your kid be the teacher. Ask your son to teach you how to beat his favorite video game. Have your daughter show you how she scores those game-winning soccer goals. They'll love showing off their skills to you!
- #5: Make the activity match the age: It's never too early or late to get involved in activities with your child. Whether you're a brand new dad trying to figure out how to take care of an infant or a father of teens who's at a loss for how to connect with your busy teenagers, there's always something you can do together with your children. Check out these tips for age-appropriate activities.
4 Tips to Help You Find Time to Get Involved
Before you can get involved in your child's activities, you have to make sure you have some free time! We know that balancing work and family is one of the more difficult challenges dads face, and that's why we've created resources to help dads conquer that obstacle! The tips below are from our brochure12 Ways to Balance Work and Family.
- Use Work Benefits that Help You Balance Work and Family: Your employer might offer benefits like flextime, shift swapping, telecommuting, paternity leave, or leave banks. Use them to help you with work and family time. If your employer doesn't offer these benefits, talk to your human resources office about offering them.
- Be Choosy with Special Jobs: Think before you agree to overtime work or special jobs. It may be tempting to have the extra money or respect, but it may mean you'll have less time with your family.
- Create "Family Prime Time": Create a daily block of time for family called "family prime time." Turn off your cell phone and laptop and keep your work off-limits during this time.
- Make Your Boss Your Ally: Working with your boss requires honesty, trust, and hard work. Work with your boss to create ways that help you meet your duty to both your job and family. One great way is to record your progress on the job in a weekly report to your boss. This way, you are judged on what you do and not just when you're present.
You can read the rest of the 12 tips in this brochure by ordering it from our FatherSOURCE™ Resource Center
Dad, take action today to get involved in your child's activities! A few small steps can make a big impact!