How do you strengthen your parent-child bond? If your little one has a favorite hobby, it offers the ideal opportunity to spend quality time doing something they love.
Here are ten tips for connecting with your child over hobbies.
1. Get on Their Level
Have you ever looked at the world from a child’s eye view? It’san entirely different perspective. Part of the joy of having children is getting to play in a blanket fort again without feeling silly — go ahead and have that imaginary camping trip in your living room.
If you get lucky with warm days, take it to the patio and tell ghost stories by flashlight.
2. Educate Yourself
The modern marvel of the internet means that you can learn about new hobbies without heading to the rec center or YMCA. Hop on Google and research your child’s favorite pastime.
Once you educate yourself, you can share your new knowledge with your child. Do they know the difference between a tower and an aerial fire truck? Teach them!
3. Be Silly
Does your toddler’s favorite hobby involve catching crayfish in the local creek? Who said you couldn’t buy them a baby pair of hip waders and a net? Go ahead and don your fishing gear and head out with them — they’ll appreciate your “professional” assistance.
4. Withhold Judgment
Here’s a trick — the next time you find yourself passing judgment, replace that negative feeling with curiosity. Instead of saying, “Are you playing Minecraft again, ask your child questions about the game — you might find yourself pleasantly surprised at how educational it is.
5. Set Time Aside
The best gift that you can give to anyone you love, especially a child, is that of your time. After all, there’s only one of you and them — each of your personalities is as unique as your bond.
Fortunately, you don’t have to devote your entire weekend to connecting with your child over their hobbies. However, make the minutes you spend with them count. Research indicates that quality matters more than quantity when it comes to time with your kids, so put down your cellphone and remain present in the moment.
6. Get Some Gear
Does your little one eat, sleep and breathe baseball? What is their favorite team? No law says you have to stop with decorating their playroom like a miniature Fenway Park. They’llfeel proud holding your hand out in public when you wear your Bogaerts jersey.
7. And Outfit Your Little One
Ensure you update your little one’s wardrobe when you go shopping for yourself. Better yet, get your child’s input on the gear they want the most.
You know that they need a helmet, elbow and knee pads for skateboarding, but do you know the hottest ones at the skatepark? Pay as much attention to what’s popular when you take them and do online research to check consumer reports on quality before purchasing.
8. Show Up in the Stands
If your little one’s hobbies entail games, tournaments or other displays of athleticism, please ensure you are present in the stands for these events. Make yourself comfortable by purchasing a stadium seat so that you don’t have to shiver on a hard metal bench.
9. Rent Movies
Did your little one’s favorite hobby make it to the big screen? If they love chess, the Netflix series “The Queen’s Gambit” received rave reviews — why not spend a rainy weekend binge-watching it together?
If they love baseball, you can find movies like “Field of Dreams” and “A League of One’s Own.” If golf is more their game, comedies like “Happy Gilmore” and “Caddyshack” never fail to bring smiles to the faces of folks of all ages.
10. Share Books and Resources
Another way of connecting with your child over their hobby is to share books and resources about it. If they have a Kindle, your gift-giving got less expensive — you can often download titles less expensively than buying a paper or hardback.
When it comes to print publications, many hobbies have magazines dedicated to enthusiasts. Why not surprise them with a subscription?
Connect With Your Child Over Their Hobbies With These 10 Tips
When it comes to bonding with your child, connecting with them over hobbies is one way to strengthen your relationship. Use the ten tips above to get closer.