Thursday, June 18, 2009

Ways to Spend Quality Time With Younger Siblings

The other day, after I wrote about being a big sister, one of my friends emailed me this question:

"Do you have any friendly tips or advice... I really want my siblings to think of me as their 'big sissy' who loves them selflessly and who would take time out of her busy schedule to help them."

So, I'd like to expand a little on spending time with your siblings.

Really, it's not hard! Our little brothers and sisters think the world of us. For us to do even the tiniest thing makes their hearts swell and the sunshine come out! Here are some practical things I've included in my schedule, to make sure time with the Darlings is spent wisely each day.

Spend a 1/2 hour: ages 2-5

Start a "preschool" time. Go to the local teacher's store and buy (or make your own) a big calendar set, weather poster and days of the week cards. Use fifteen minutes for "circle time" by talking about the days of the week, the weather, the date, etc. Add songs like the days of the week song, a weather song and any other kiddie songs you'd like to add. Be sure to use all your new stuff! Read a story. Then, spend the next fifteen minutes doing an appropriate activity for the age levels you're dealing with. You can paint, glue, cut, play with sand in a sensory tub... the options are endless! The internet is a great source for ideas and songs, too.

Another good thing to do is to plan a whole (school) week of your preschool times, and theme them. You can use themes like colors, dogs, the grocery store, police men, etc. Here's what one of my half hour might look like if I were doing a color theme:

-Do calendar time like normal -Read a book about colors -Sing a song or two about colors -paint with water colors or play with colored shaving cream at the table

Spend a 1/2 hour: ages 5-10

When my siblings are getting bored with preschool time, they usually get moved up to spending a half hour with me one-on-one. Currently Creative Genius and I are together from 1:30 to 2 o'clock while the little ones are napping. We do whatever he chooses. Sometimes it's a game, a walk, helping him organize something... and sometimes Mom puts us on a job (today we made rhubarb crisp for snack). For the last few months, though, Creative Genius has chosen to read through chapter books. Right now we're about half way through one of the American Adventure books. He likes going through series!

Spend 45 minutes: ages 10 and up

While Active Boy and I don't do things together every day, once in a while we'll go on a long bike ride or walk through our neighborhood. It's a good time for us to talk about personal things, and usually he ends up sharing some of his deep thoughts. These are wonderful times - ones that both of us will fondly remember! We also enjoy jumping on the trampoline and playing board and card games. All in all, whatever we do, it's still one-on-one time spent with one of my best friends.


I admit it. There are days when I don't want to read, or walk or play a game or be a happy, fun sissy. This is when SELF CONTROL and A GOOD ATTITUDE comes in. These are your siblings. The people who will be a part of your life for the rest of your life, even after you all have families of your own. Let them think of you as a happy, fun Let's-Bake-Cookies-Darling type of sister!


The Author said...

I just noticed you changed the template. Excellent post. You've got it all planned out! :) Wonderful.
The Author

Emilee said...

THANK YOU SERENITY!!!! i really appreciate you taking the time to answer have some great ideas!!! i am plan to try them out soon!!!!