5 Easy Ways To Connect With Your Child

January 22, 2019

In the real world I’m a first grade teacher. I spend a lot of time around high energy kids and am able to develop really cool connections with them. I love my job because I love teaching these kids.

Buuuut at the end of the school day I’m always really tired (I mean I have 23 kids and about 16 of them are boys so as you can imagine it gets a little cray).

By the time I pick up the kids from their sitters house and drive home I’m basically ready for bed. I want to connect with my kids, but I end up feeling a lot of physical and mental exhaustion. This is especially true as it gets closer to Friday.

It can be hard to be a working mom sometimes but right now it’s the right thing for our family, so we have to make it work the best we can. Because I have less time with my kids during the week, I have to find ways to connect with them meaningfully in the time I do have.

We read a lot of books together.

One of the most important ways (for me) to connect with my kids is by reading to them. I love reading with them because as a teacher I feel like it’s so important, but also I like sharing in the experiences. We laugh together, learn together, and get to enjoy the stories together.

Emphasis on the word together.

Spending time reading with the kids has allowed me to get to know their interests and see more of their personalities too! I know that Easton would rather read a silly book, and that if I read rhyming books to Lincoln he’ll remember the rhyme and “read” it back to me.

We can also have conversations about the stories which helps them develop critical thinking skills and learn how to read between the lines.

Obviously reading is super important to me. HA.

We watch plenty of movies, too.

As fun as it is to read together, sometimes I’m just really freaking tired.

Watching movies can be just as good as reading together if you make it a time to connect instead of just zoning out together. Don’t let it turn into time to play on your phone while your kids are distracted. Cuddle with your kids, eat popcorn, laugh, and talk to each other.

We try to watch new movies each time. I really like to make the kids watch movies that I watched growing up, and Easton loves to hear about how I used to be so much like him when I was little!

We build lego’s together.

I’m not a creative mom. I mean okay, in some ways I’m creative, just not crafting or that kind of thing.

So instead of making cool crafty things with my kids in that way, we make things with legos! Usually that involves helping Easton make a police station, and then destroy it, and then rebuild it again, but he loves it!

This time together is a great time to talk about the things he’s interested in and for him to share how he’s feeling about things.

Being able to teach him how to communicate is so important so I love that we have this time to talk, collaborate, and develop these skills together.

Plus, to be fair, it doesn’t take much work on my end.

We spend time together outside.

When it was warmer we got out of the house every single day. We would all go on walks to the park or rides in the wagon or Easton would ride his bike while I pushed Lincoln.

Spending time out of the house when we don’t really have to go anywhere was is good for us. I get some exercise and the emotional/mental boost that can come with being outdoors while the boys are able to let off some energy.

Even though it’s been a little too cold for our daily walks lately, I’m really looking forward to the spring when it warms up to the point where we can do that and more! Being outside is so important to me so it’s definitely something I want to pass on to my kiddos.

We stick to our routines.

Having solid routines is so crucial to developing little minds. When little one’s have a real routine that they stick to everyday, things become easier to process. They feel secure and safe.

We are pretty laid back, so we don’t have a really structured routine for most of the day, but we do have some things we do every day. For example, our bedtime routines. We do the same thing every single night for bedtime.

Lincoln goes to bed at around 8 every night. We read one of 3 books (lately it’s been his big book of dinosaurs), then we sing you are my sunshine, he turns off the light in his room, and then we do hugs and kisses and he goes to bed.

Easton’s is a lot more complex. We get his 2-3 blankets ready and he gets settled, then we read a story together. After that I put lotion on his legs and arms, we say a prayer, I sing him 2-3 songs, and then we do a huge, a kiss, butterfly kisses, and ugga-mugga’s (aka eskimo kisses…see Daniel Tiger). He has to have his rescue-bot, a freshly filled cup of water, and his blanket at just the right size before he can go to sleep.

He’s pretty extra *insert shrugging emoji*.

Having these little routines helps our kids to feel a sense of security and that alone makes them feel more connected to me and our family. It also gives me that one on one time with them everyday which is so special.

I know that it can be so hard to find ways to connect with your kids when you’re a busy mom, but it is so worth it!

If our ways don’t work for you, think about the things you’re already doing and how you can alter them to make them more meaningful and intentional. Sometimes that means making more of an effort for conversation or putting your phone down. That might mean trying something completely new and out of your comfort zone.

But it’s so, so worth it.

We only get these sweet little ones for so much time. Make it count.

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    At Motherhood Revival, the goal is to build community through storytelling. My name is Morgan Gifford and each week, I sit down with influential mamas to record the amazing experiences that shaped their motherhood. You will also be able to find stories posted to the blog. Through these stories I aim to reach others who need to feel uplifted and inspired. I hope you’ll follow along!

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