6. LIMIT SUGARY SODAS TO WEEKENDS ONLY. Yes, by now we have all read the <a href="http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/sugary-drinks-fact-sheet/">harmful effects of how drinking too much soda pop</a> can impact your kids. Here at Play Unplugged we see what happens when this habit is combined with the more sedentary lifestyles that kids now assume, spending more and more time in front of television and computer screens--these two combination do not a healthy child make! :)
By first explaining the 'why' to this goal and how it <a href="http://kidshealth.org/kid/stay_healthy/food/water.html">helps make them healthier</a> and keep them in better shape, you can begin weaning them off the soda pop and other high sugary beverages now and not when the weight adds on and bad habits are made. This will also allow you the ability of limiting their consumption to the weekends as a 'treat' and not a mainstay at each meal. By replacing soda/sugary drinks with water or healthy, home-made smoothies, your kids will not only feel better but begin the healthier habits they will need in the coming years. And since you aren't removing those beverages entirely, your kids will not see this as some form of punishment--since they can still have them on the weekends!
Once they begin to reduce their consumption, often times when re-introduced to soda/sugary beverages, the kids themselves often notice these drinks are now "too sweet" and they don't miss them as much as they thought.
7. START A GARDEN: Remember kids love to learn things, and if they can't have a pet having a garden teaches them the same ideas about responsibility and caring for a living object. By teaching them how to grow vegetables and fruits, you are teaching them about nutrition as well! And if you can remember your days as a child, it was really, really cool when you saw your plants begin to pop out of the ground, grow and blossom--all eventually leading to harvest time! By setting one of your New Years Resolutions for your kids by starting and maintaining a garden will also allow you to spend more direct time with them, working together.
Again, the best part of this new hobby is that you can actually reap the rewards you sow! There is nothing more satisfying than eating the fruits of your labors as a family--so visit the nursery this New Years Weekend and begin thinking and planning what your kids want to do this spring/summer.
8. TEACH THEM TO SAVE MONEY: If you operate under a budget, you know how crucial this skill is in anyone's later years. By teaching kids NOW to save money, you have essentially given them independence and security for decades. This is among the most potentially valuable of all New Years Resolutions for your kids since we cannot underestimate the things they will learn! By asking they save five or 10 percent, you can show them how quickly that will build up in their savings, and odds are they perhaps won't miss that 5 - 10 percent when they do chores, babysit or receive birthday money. And when they do get that first job as a teenager, those savings will grow even larger!
Here are some pretty awesome tips on how they can begin saving <a href="http://www.wikihow.com/Save-Money-as-a-Kid">RIGHT HERE</a>.
9. HAVE A FUN, SPONTANEOUS MOMENT ONCE A WEEK: Yes! This one should provide you and your kids with plenty of laughs during the year, as well as create fond memories for decades to come. The ideas here are ENDLESS! Truly! One day your kids can come home from school and suddenly be in the middle of a confetti fight for no other reason than they came home. Or you can suddenly all go to an ice cream stand one summer night as a family at the spur of the moment, or by a parent shouting out a code word like "Pineapple!" :) (you can make up your own silly code word) The object is to do something spontaneous and fun once a week to break up the routine a bit and allow an opportunity for you and your kids to 'let their hair down' once a week!
10. REDUCE THE SCREEN TIME BY ONE HOUR EACH DAY: This one may be tough and hopefully the Play Unplugged staff has provided you with positive alternatives to helping your kids reduce their screen time by one hour every day. :) Before you idly dismiss this one, perhaps erroneously convincing yourself that "<em>my</em> kids don't spend<em> that</em> much time in front of the screen", do a family inventory on how much your kids do spend, and how much you and your spouse spend--then you can all find ways to reduce that number by 'one' each day!
By logging the hours and knowing for certain how much time is otherwise wasted on video games and television, you begin to realize <em>how much time</em> you have together that you may have not realized! Ask yourself; 'how many projects I could've done/' or 'what could we have done as a family instead of watching a screen?' By reducing the daily intake by one simple hour should show you how much time you truly have together!
If we have not listed something that you do not already do, then we urge you to find something that will directly affect your child in a positive way! :) This may seem like a 'cop out' but in all seriousness; you know your child better than we do! So here is an exhaustive list from the American Academy of Pediatrics of <a href="https://www.aap.org/en-us/about-the-aap/aap-press-room/news-features-and-safety-tips/pages/healthy-new-year-resolutions-for-kids.aspx">New Years Resolutions for your kids</a> that you can pick and choose if none of the ones our staff came up with sound like a good fit in your family. |
Remember that planning ahead now makes these New Years Resolutions for your kids make a difference in their lives for years to come!
Good luck and from our staff here at Play Unplugged; have a happy New Year everyone!
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