Most of us take our kids for granted, shutting them up when we're tired, and expecting them to entertain us whenever we're in the mood. Till one fine day, when they're all grown up, we look around and wonder where they've gone. We realise that they're far, far away in a world of their own, which doesn't include us. No one expects to be estranged from their kids as they grow up, and nobody wants it, yet it does happen. Even if your children are not exactly estranged, but if the deep, loving bond is missing, it hurts.
What did you do the last time when your child came up to you begging you to play a game of Ludo? Were you too busy? Were you too preoccupied as you waited to see what Tulsi did next, on your favourite soap? Or did you just stop whatever you were doing and roll the dice?
This doesn't mean you have to join the neighbourhood kids in their game of kho kho and sprain a limb while you're at it. Indoor games are the way to go!
Keep some time aside to spend playing a game with your kids. Develop a routine, depending on your schedule. Once a week, or perhaps even every night after dinner, spend an hour or so playing a board game with your kids.
Enhances intellectual development
Games like Chess sharpen the mind and enhance intellectual development, while a game like Scrabble would expand your child's word power. Start out with easy words at first, and encourage your child to use the dictionary. Pretty soon your child will be using words even you've never heard of!
When parents spend adequate time with their kids and treat them like equals, it enhances their self-esteem and builds confidence. In addition, their skills at a particular game get sharpened, and the knowledge that they can beat most of their friends at that game does wonders for their pride.
Provide a healthy mix
On the other hand, don't monopolise your children. Encourage them to go out and play with their friends in the evening. Provide a healthy mix of indoor and outdoor activities. Help them schedule their homework in such a manner that they are free by around 6:00 p.m. and from then on, it's playtime!
Not only will the both of you have a great time playing together, but also these times spent together will provide you and your child with a lifetime of memories you are sure to cherish.
Instead of taking a regular vacation this summer, plan an adventure holiday. Many travel agencies offer packages that are chockablock with activities. This, of course, doesn't mean just Carom or table tennis - you could stay at home for that! Go in for packages that include activities like cycling, hiking, boat rides, horse riding.
"A family that plays together stays together." Truer words were never spoken.