As a father, how active is your involvement in parenting? Do you simply think your job is over by tickling the kids every once in a while and taking care of the finances, or does your involvement go a step further?
Where do you usually vacation as a family? Is it always to the same place, viz. you hometown, or do you explore new and different places each year as a family? While it is perfectly understandable that you would want to spend your vacation time with your extended family, you should also give a thought to letting your children experience new places and cultures. So instead of making your children spend the entire two months of summer vacation in your hometown, organize a week's trip to a new destination every year. If your hometown is Delhi for example, take a week/10 day vacation from Delhi to Jaipur or Udaipur. The next year you can take a trip to Mussourie. In this manner, you will spend time with your extended family, your children will get to know their cousins, and your family will see a new place every year.
Organise weekends out
How often do you take a family vacation on the weekend? Fabulous weekend deals, especially during off-season, are regularly offered by resorts on the outskirts of your town. If you regularly visit places together as a family, you will bond better and will be more likely to take family vacations together even when your children are adults. But if you hardly ever travel together as a family, and only make trips if you are accompanied with other couples and their children, you will not bond as much as a family. You will be with the other couples, while your children will be occupied with the other children. Although such group vacations are definitely desirable, try and make it a point to make some trips with only the immediate family.
Take your children for activities. Parents in India tend to enroll their children in classes or send their children to the park with the maid. If mummy is free, she will drop and pick up the kids to their various activities. Your involvement as a father is restricted to a minimum. However, you can make up for this by spending some time researching activities like fishing, that you can participate in with your child. If you play a sport like tennis, try and get your child involved in tennis as well, so you can spend time playing with him.
When did you last go for a picnic with your family? Take the initiative and surprise your family by organizing a family picnic. Go to a place which is a little further out, so it feels like an event. Make sure there are toilets and changing rooms and that it isn't so hot outside that your children get heatstroke. If you have access to a pool or a lake, even better! Pack some outdoor games in your picnic basket, like a Frisbee or a throwball. Children enjoy nothing more than playing games with their daddy, so get up and get moving!
For a change, go out for shopping with your kids. You can take your kids out for shopping for clothes, toys or just take a tour of a vegetable market to do vegetable shopping with your kids. If you find it difficult to decide a day on which you would like to take your kids out for shopping, you can take them for shopping on special occasions like birthdays, festivals etc.
Helping with Homework and Projects
You must never miss an opportunity to help your kids with homework. If your kids learn to solve a math problem from you, they will never stop bragging that “my dad taught me to solve this problem”. At the same time helping kids with drawing and arts projects is also one of the best ways to spend time with kids and encourage them to be creative.
Do not forget to have reading sessions with your kids on weekends. Read a story book or a general knowledge book with them. Reading with kids will help you to develop the habit of reading in them. If you read general knowledge books with your kids they will also learn important facts. Reading is a very important activity which you can carry out with your kids because they can reap innumerable benefits out of this activity.
You can carry out the above activities with your kids or you can ask your kids about their favourite activities. But as a father it is very important for you to spend quality time with kids. Duty of parents never ends only by providing the material things which kids need. It is also very important for both the parents to spend quality time with them. Along with love and attention of parents kids also deserve their time.