There are many benefits of holding regular family meetings for children and parents. Family meetings strengthen relationships and foster core developmental abilities in children of all ages. And the benefits of holding family meetings are not limited to better communication skills, improved problem-solving skills, opportunity to be proactive and mindful about challenges.
As part of the new year's resolutions for the family, consider holding weekly family meetings to give everyone —including the children—an opportunity to be heard and learn together as a family.
Here are a few ideas for the family meeting agenda.
- Give appreciation
Take a few minutes for each family member to appreciate, say "thanks," compliment, or acknowledge other members on positive things they noticed this week. This may include a thank you for taking the initiative to pack your school bag, congrats on progressing to a new worksheets level in Kumon Maths, or a kind word about something nice that a person did.
- Allocate discovery time
Devote 15-20 minutes to learning together as a family. This may include discussing a new hobby or any other topic that may be of interest to you or your family. Share your opinions and values and listen to your children's opinions and values. For example, if your children are working on a new worksheets level, you can share your observation and gather their thoughts. Do they find it too easy or challenging? Or how the recent topics in Kumon have helped them in school?
- Introduce problem-solving
Dedicate this time to address problems or issues that individual family members have placed on the agenda. Ask each person to suggest solutions to the problems addressed. For example, suppose your children face difficulties staying focused during a particular homework time. In that case, you can discuss with them and suggest a feasible alternative routine that will work for them.
- Plan fun activities
Consider rotating the responsibility for planning the fun activity each week among family members. This might include playing a game, watching a movie, or making pizza together.
Regular family meetings are an intentional way to help raise genuinely successful children with essential life skills. The key to building a connected and successful family meeting is to address everything from celebrating accomplishments to facing challenges together. And always remember to start and end each session positively and aim to keep it relatively short and focused.