Fun with Kids

FAMILY GAME TIME

 

This is an EXCELLENT GAME to get to know if anything WRONG is going on in your child’s life outside your knowledge. This game also brings a lot of closeness and bonding amongst family members and helps you discover things about each other you probably did not know. #mustplay #GAMES#family #parenting

                                                                                            BACKDROP

Dhreya was very excited and eager for her turn to open the chit. Every chit had a special surprise question to which each of us have to answer. At first I thought this game may hold her attention for long but then I realized she loved it! Kids can surprise us with how well they can respond to ‘new learnings’, after all they are naturally curious and playful.

I have been fortunate to have a Masters in Psychology. Even though I have not specialized in Child Psychology, it has helped me a great deal to extend that knowledge to my upbringing and guidance of her and other kids. I am proud of the way she is growing up and the games we play as a family are pure ‘treasure’. This is a game that I have invented just a week ago. My mind bursts with creative ideas in my pursuit to give her the best upbringing that I can. Bonding with others and staying connected to our inner-self, our emotions is the most important element of existence. Today I am sharing this game with you, it is going to give you a huge amount of information about your family members and about yourself which you probably never knew!

AIM OF THE GAME: Finish all the chits or as many chits as you wish and have each one answer every question. Have fun!

HOW TO: All players sit in a circle. Players must know each other well like family members or very close friends because chits involve some personal questions too. Players must be 5 years + and must include at least one mature adult.

One person draws a chit from a bowl of chits. The chit is opened and question is read out aloud. The person holding the chit answers the question first and then the other players take turns giving their answers. Everyone must give an answer to each question, each chit.

WHAT YOU NEED: Chits made for each of the question I write below, water and some fun snacks if you wish

DURATION: You can decide how long you wish to play. To get through all the chits it may take a good 40 minutes but you can divide the game in 2 parts to play over 2 times.

WHERE: You can play this game anywhere where you have privacy. It is a great game to play when you are on a vacation or travelling but if you play in public, make sure you leave out some of the personal questions.

OTHER IMPORTANT INSTRUCTIONS: Let the participants know that there is no right or wrong answer. All answers are accepted gracefully and that there is no judgment and also that none of their answers will be shared with anyone else if they don’t want to. Ensure confidentiality for any sensitive information shared. Also let each individual know that – If some questions feel uncomfortable, pay close attention to those feelings. Why are they uncomfortable, what are the triggers there?

                                                                              DISCLAIMERS and REMINDERS

It is important to not avoid difficult questions esp. with children because that discomfort will give you very important clues about what is happening in your child’s life that you may not be aware of but remember to play it only when EVERYONE FEELS COMFORTABLE WITH EVERYONE ELSE IN THE GROUP and to stop when anyone asks to stop or if anyone is way too disturbed to answer or continue. Ask everyone, even small and older children if they are okay sharing their personal likes and stories with everyone in the group. Stop if anyone requests to stop at any point.

 

QUESTIONS: Note that you can add on your own. When I made up the game, I had 15 minutes before it was our family game time and I quickly thought of the questions I could.

  1. The sport I always wanted to learn is ____ and that sport that seems least fun is _____
  2. The one thing I love at school or work is _____ and the one thing I dislike at school/work is ___
  3. MY favorite person at school/work is _____ and my least favorite person at school/work is ____
  4. If I could change one thing about myself it would be _______ and if I could gift one thing about myself ____
  5. If I had a million dollars _______ and If I had very little money _______
  6. If I could change one thing about my life _______ and the one thing I love about my life _______
  7. I feel happy when ________ and I feel sad when _________
  8. I feel confident when ________ and I feel inferior when _________
  9. I feel comfortable with ________- and I feel uncomfortable with or when ____
  10. My favorite body part is _______ and the least favorite body part is ________
  11. I love the touch of _______ and I don’t like when _____ touches me
  12. My most memorable trip so far is _____and the least memorable trip is _______
  13. The best moment of my life _______ and the worst moment of my life________
  14. I felt proud of myself when ______ and I felt ashamed or embarrassed when _________
  15. I feel loved when ________ and I feel rejected when ____________

As you notice the questions can go on and you can add your own questions as long as they feel ‘safe’ to answer to a child and adult. If there are deep emotions that emerge or discomfort, please be supportive of the person without any judgments or advice. Just hear the person out and say that you understand or that you will like to understand more. PLEASE DO NOT FORCE ANYONE TO ANSWER IF THERE IS CONSIDERABLE DISCOMFORT. Esp. with teenagers or around negative event memories, the aim of the game is to help not hurt more.

When we played this game, I was able to validate some answers like my daughter confirmed with me that she has hated the hugs and touch of her uncle which she remembers from 4 years of age. He used to force hug her tight and after several messages to them, he would not stop. Dhreya would come back home and talk about the hug in a fleeting way but I knew as a mom and a psychologist that it was bothersome to her. I finally wrote a stern message involving all concerned family members and ensured that he stopped touching her. Today after 3 years she still remembers that negative feeling! ON the other hand, I never knew that her least favorite body part was her nose!

This game is excellent to also teach your child that negative and positive emotions are normal part of life and that it is very important to be aware of what disturbs us and that it is okay to share it with people we trust! I played part of this game at a temple workshop that I did recently and received many positive reviews for the game.

Please feel free to share your views and how your experience was. Also, I would like you to honor this exercise as a reference to this article and my efforts if you happen to use it professionally or for any group or individual work. Any similarity found with any other similar creation is merely a coincidence.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE TO BENEFIT OTHERS AND FOLLOW MY BLOG FOR MORE RESOURCES FOR PARENTING AND PERSONAL GROWTH. You may like this important family game as well 

Adios!

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PARENTING

TOP 10 WAYS TO TEACH YOUR KIDS TO LOVE THEMSELVES

The most important worry or question any parent has is – “How can I make my child so confident that s/he can face anything in this world and be successful?” This is a million dollar question and here is your million dollar answer. You do not need to do anything fancy and carry a worry worm within you. Worry has no power by itself. If backed with action it becomes motivation, if left at worry it becomes disease and if left with inaction, it becomes a mountain of problems. Hence, here is the list of THINGS TO DO TO KEEP YOUR CHILD BUFFERED.

  1. ACCEPT: Accept that your child has his or her own bag of karmas and nothing you do will completely change those karmas. They have their rocks and mountains to climb to learn from and some are really born with a silver spoon. It is just what their soul chose. Hence, you are NOT the person in control, you are only the guide!
  1. CHANGE WHAT: It is important to focus our efforts in the right direction. Do not attempt to change your kids. Attempt to change their behaviour and help them make productive choices. An introvert will remain an introvert no matter how much your try. If the introvert changes into an extrovert that is because either the situations made him so or because the child was always an extrovert but required the right opportunity. We cannot turn wood into iron and vice versa. The more you show your kids that you love them for who they are and that there are STRENGTHS for all kinds of personality, the more they will be confident and love themselves.
  1. DON’T PRAISE EVERYTHING: Honestly, this is a hard one for me too. It is so easy to WOW everything for our kids. But the truth is that it harms them at some point because it creates EXTERNAL MOTIVATION and a tendency to PEOPLE PLEASE. They must know to self-analyse and be self-motivated independent of what others think. This is a great way to boost their self-confidence.
  1. CREATE SELF-RELIANCE: I love the Montessori philosophy that – “Don’t do for the child what the child can do himself”. The more independent kids are, the more they are confident to face the challenges of the world. In the Indian culture we tend to over-protect our kids and do a lot more for them than they actually need. Living in USA, I have been awed to see that a 1 year young child eats NOODLES and all meals by himself or herself and that they change themselves by age 2 and more. It is amazing how much they can learn if we allow them to.
  1. SOCIALIZE: The more you socialize as a parent, the more your child will too. Social skills are critical to confidence and success in today’s globalization. Few businesses or works are in isolation of other people hence teach them to socialize by modelling the correct manners. I don’t mean PARTY while you leave them at a baby-sitter. I host, invite, attend other moms’ homes with the kind of values you want your child to learn.
  1. LABELS ARE LOUSY: Never label your child as – “Lazy” “Motu” “Fatso” “Darpok” and so on. Those labels may be fun for you but they carve and itch themselves in your child’s brain and then the brain learns to be STUCK on it forever. Growing up, you may see them do exactly what the label says and mark their way to failure. Imagine failing at something only because you were called names a 1000 times in a decade. You may label their behaviour instead – “This sounds like a lazy idea or you are being lazy” which is very different from “you are lazy”.
  1. PERFORM but not OVER-PERFORM: The world is a stage and we are the performers. As parents we are so anxious to MAKE THEM SMART. I don’t understand that concept of enrolling a child in 5 classes to make them smart! School, heavy bag, heavy H.W., lots of classes, late sleep and over burden creates BURN OUT not smartness. Choose 2 classes at a time and use them to the fullest. Allow them to stage perform if they want to or don’t mind it. But forcing a child to be on stage I Have them practice at home to hone those 2 skills. The rest of the time that you used for 3 other classes, instead use for spending one on one time with your child. You can save your Rs. 6000 by playing UNO, SCRABBLE, CHESS and MEMORY with them instead. It will make them smarter than you think, save your money and also save the STRAIN in your relationship with your kid.
  1. NEVER CRITICIZE, JUDGE, STRIP YOUR CHILD WITH YOUR ANGER: “What a shame that ….” “You don’t even know that much…” “I have told you so many times but you are so stupid…” “You fool…” “You could do better than that…” “I told you to do this but you did not listen…” are the best ways to strip your child off their self-confidence forever. Why don’t you turn around and use all those statements on yourself? Feel great uh? Makes you very confident uh? Worse still, use these statements, angry voice and REJECT your child in front of others. Doesn’t matter sister, mother, close friends, whoever they are to you, to the child they are ENEMIES OF SELF-CONFIDENCE and SELF-WORTH.
  1. UNCONDITIONAL LOVE: Love your child no matter what. Your child was not born to INCREASE YOUR STATUS and NAME in society. S/he was born to allow you to love and to give you love in return. Keep it simple, don’t pollute it with expectations of the world. A 10th rank doesn’t make your child less lovable, neither does failing. It only means GOD IS TESTING YOUR ABILITY TO LOVE NO MATTER WHAT!Express your love, hug them but not so tight that they feel uncomfortable ;) Use the “I love you” statement not to get their approval or make up for your mistakes but because you truly value their existence in your world.

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  1. APPLY WHAT YOU READ: You have read many articles, now apply all the good stuff you read. Stop, Think and Start applying at least 2 of the above points.
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