No school, fewer responsibilities when it comes to toting around the kids, and the not-so-blissful awareness that your loving children are arguing. Again.
Yes, regardless of age, years between, or gender, your kids, no doubt, will have their moments this summer when they long to be an only child. And who can blame them? When put in the same space with the same people for an extended period of time, nearly everyone feels the need for a breather.
Unfortunately, sometimes this means that our houses are a little less peaceful than we desire them to be. So to curb some of these summer sibling spats that all parents with multiple children are prone to experience, here are six ways to get your kids to get along and promote a harmonious environment:
1.Set Aside Me Time
“Me” time is important for everyone, including our children. Set aside an hour within the day where everyone takes a break and chooses an activity that he or she can do solitarily. Whether this be painting, writing or reading. To prevent kids from fighting over the same solo activity, have them choose an option that involves only items that belong to them. If another item is needed, have them politely ask to borrow it.
2.Work on a Project Together
Photo by apartment28
Living in the city, we find many opportunities for crafting or upcycling old furniture. Find a project, like upcycling an old dresser that you found at the thrift, that all of the kids would be able to work on. Have them come together to make decisions on colors, finishes and fine details. Then, assign each person to a particular job. Best of all, projects like this are not only bring together the entire family, but are an opportunity to create a timepiece in your home.
3.Invite Friends Over
Photo by Seattle Municipal Archives
Sometimes all it takes to get a little peace from sibling spats is to give your kids the opportunity to play with someone else. Allow them to have a friend over when time allows, so they can have the chance to connect with someone their own age. Set up play dates in advance so your kids have something to look forward to.
Just because it’s summer break doesn’t mean that your kids need a break from chores. Get a little help around the house and eliminate arguments over who needs to do what by assigning and rotating a chore list. Try using a chart to keep your family chores organized, giving everyone a specific and realistic timeframe for completing the tasks.
5.Set Times for Electronics
A lot of spats these days revolve around electronic privileges. Set aside specific times for each child to have access to an electronic, where they have the ability to choose the television show or video game. You may want to consider giving them times to play or watch solo, and times when they need to be with their siblings and reach a compromise. I love the idea of breaking down media minutes and creating your own unique summer chore charts.
6.Create a Boredom Jar
Photo by clogozm
When kids get bored, sometimes they get a little antsy and impatient. Create a boredom jar to dispel any of those “I’m bored” moments. Filled with activities, a boredom jar uses sticks or slips of paper to list an idea or activity that the puller must complete. The activities can be anything from a chore to visiting their favorite destination in the city. Or become ambitious with 100 ideas for boredom jars.
Use these six ways to prevent spats between siblings this summer. Give them much needed time to themselves, but also encourage them to work together as a unit to complete projects and chores. You’ll find that by doing so, you’ll have a happier and more harmonious home.