By Ocean Noah
The 21st century has brought along many changes with how we communicate. Some of the changes are good. Others….not so much.
Social media and smartphones often replace – sadly – interpersonal communication and relationships. And, the digital age has forever changed how we parent our kids.
For example, it’s often challenging for parents to coax their children into participating in a kids yoga class, playing with friends sans technology, or even going outside to play.
Luckily, we’re throwing it back by looking at things our parents did & gleaning some parenting tips from generations before us – all in hopes of becoming more grounded parents and kids yoga teachers.
Here are 8 parenting tips that we learned from generations before us. Take a look:
Things Our Parents Did That We Should Keep Doing
1. Let Kids Play Outside
According to the CDC, children ages eight to 18 spend an average of seven and a half hours every day on entertainment – not for educational purposes. Unfortunately, the average child has only three to four minutes of unstructured outdoor time in a day.
How often do your kids get to spend free time outside? Can you commit to one to two hours of outdoor play time – a week?
Simple trips to the park or weekend hikes can be hugely beneficial. And remember: Free time outside encourages using your imagination, exercising, and connecting to nature.
2. Give Kids Chores
Some parents these days have got rid of chores because their children have too many academic and extracurricular responsibilities.
That is a valid choice.
But, there are considerable benefits to having a chore system in place, too. Chores teach children the value of their contributions and responsibility at an early age.
For example, doing dishes as a preteen gave me the skills to be a full-time student and part-time employee as a young adult.
3. Let Kids Entertain Themselves
As mentioned before, kids today depend on technology as a source of entertainment. And, many parents incorporate screen time into their parenting styles.
This debilitates a child’s ability to be their own source of entertainment. It’s also problematic because boredom can cause destructive behavior.
Limited screen time, on the other hand, forces children to find entertainment by interacting with others, reading, exercising, taking a yoga class, and other activities.
4. Practice Yoga
You know that archetype of the “yoga mom”?
Let’s keep up the momentum!
5. Be a Parent, Not a Friend
Having a close relationship with your child does not mean being their friend.
Setting boundaries and rules for safety are uncomfortable but also important. Ultimately, your kids will be grateful for the lessons you taught them because they will be able to set their own boundaries in their adult lives.
6. Let Your Child Fail
Encourage your kid to try things that they are not inherently good at.
If they are great at math, encourage them to take a creative writing class. If they are good at painting, encourage them to try soccer. If they are frustrated with sports, enroll them in a kids yoga class.
Succeeding is not the only reason to participate in an activity. Kids need to learn that they can’t be good at everything. Learning to be comfortable with their skills and talents is an important life skill to develop.
7. Regular Family Dinners
Sometimes extracurriculars can get in the way of family dinners. That’s totally understandable.
But there is great value in sitting down together to have dinner – as often as possible. Eating dinner together is a perfect time to share details about your daily lives, joke around, and even give each other advice.
8. Play Classical Music for Babies
Even though the “Mozart Effect” or the idea that playing classical music for babies makes them smarter is not always accurate, playing classical music is still a good idea.
The Atlantic reported that researchers from Northwestern University’s Auditory Neuroscience Laboratory found that learning how to play a musical instrument can help improve memory, attention, and communication skills.
Apply These Throwback Parenting Tips!
Essentially, disconnecting is essential to modern parenting.
All of these ideas – including going outside, practicing yoga, and having regular family dinners – are all great ways to disconnect from technology and reconnect with your children. Plus, these tips encourage you and your children to be imaginative and communicate.
Are you ready to take advice from older generations of parents?