Monday, April 16, 2012

Strengthening Families

There are activities parents or grandparents can do with their children to help strengthen their bond, if they are separated in any way. Military families, families of divorce, parents who travel often for work, or family members who live away from children or grandchildren can participate in various activities to create valuable memories with each other. For more information about military families and ways to meet the needs of young children click here. Here is just one activity to create a lasting memory and bond with your child:
Dream of Me:
Age: Toddlers and older. Children too young to hold a pen can participate with the help of their parents.
Items Needed:
  • 1 Pillowcase for each parent
  • 1 Pillowcase for every participating child
  • Fabric markers (one box for every 5-6 children) or Fabric paint
  • Cardboard cut to the size of a pillowcase and 6-8 cardboard cutouts so multiple pillowcases may be worked on at a time
  • Art smocks, 1 per child
Cover the table with plastic or butcher paper. Insert cardboard sheets into pillowcases to keep colors from bleeding to the other side of the fabric. Parents and children can decorate pillowcases for each other with fabric markers or paint. Explain to children, when the parent or family member is away, the child will have the pillowcase that the parent made for her, and the parent or family member can take the pillowcase the child made for him. Encourage children to decorate the pillowcase however they like. If desired, the child can have a parent write a special message on the pillowcase. Parents should write the date somewhere on the pillowcase so parents can remember when this keepsake was completed. Children who are too young to draw on their pillowcase, but want to participate can have a parent help them trace their hands and feet on the pillowcase. Be creative in creating memories for young children and connecting him to his parent who will be away. This pillowcase is a way for a young child to have a visible memory of his parent as he sleeps at night. If pillowcases are not available, parents can use t-shirts to decorate. Pillowcases can be hung on the wall to be preserved and the child can look at the pillowcase and cherish it for the rest of his childhood.

No comments:

Post a Comment