My three kids (age 8, 12 and 14) love to communicate using modern slang, memes, gifs, emojis and a slew of other things this generation has created and while I applaud the creativity and ingenuity, I have a hard time trying to connect in the ways I am familiar. Here is the thing… I need to engage with real live people face to face… see the problem here?
Then one day it hit me… rather than being “that mom” and trying to “be like them” that I would find a way to engage them on THEIR LEVEL! So, I got to thinking about what’s popular and fairly universal and saw all the Instagram and FB posts about how The Avengers: End Game was killing it in the box office and it hit me! There are literally billions of dollars being made and spent on movies and if your children are like mine, they watch a lot! There is definitely more watching than reading going on (sigh) in my house, but what I say is take your parenting wins where you can!
What scares me the most these days is that our children are losing the ability to have meaningful conversations in a world of texts, and snapchats filled with “on fleek, Gucci, tee, glow up, bruh, etc.” This can quickly translate into the degradation of critical and independent thinking that societal growth requires.
Don’t worry… this is not a losing battle and we can (and will) win the war because humans have an innate desire to connect and we as parents just need to get creative with how we build meaningful engagement and teaching moments through our normal interactions. I’ve come up with a simple and easy to implement plan that you can follow.
Next time you plan to watch a movie (as a family or separately if your kids are older) try these two things: Discuss and Do!
- Pre-School Age (3-4 years old)
- Elementary School Age (5-9 years old)
- Middle School Age (10-13 years old)
- High School Age (14-18 years old)