Being a parent of teenagers is no easy feat. They’re struggling with hormones, schoolwork, and on top of it all, worries about college and their future. This can make them reluctant to be part of family get-togethers. All is not lost, however! It just takes a little ingenuity to spark their energy. Here are some ways to get your teens involved!
Cook a Meal
One of the best ways to encourage teenagers to join the fun is to give them control. An easy example of this is at meal time. Try making an event out of your next family dinner. Allow your teens to pick the menu, then let them have the run of the kitchen (with some good supervision, of course!) Have them choose the table settings, like what silverware to use, or a particular napkin color.
Puberty is an incredibly sensitive time. Fortunately, there are ways to help your teen navigate their struggles—and you can make them fun, too. Creative expression is a critical component of mental and emotional development. Collect a variety of art supplies, and have an evening of drawing or painting. Then make a family gallery out of their creations. it’s a clear display of how proud you are, which will only inspire them further. If they’re more theatrically inclined, make home movies to showcase their acting or singing talents.
Explore your neighborhood with orienteering, or head to your local park for some greenery and fresh air. Maybe your teens have a hiking route that they’ve always wanted to try. Meandering through a forest path can spark good conversations as you comment on the scenery. Find a good camping site and get away for a weekend. If your teens play Pokemon GO, make a family competition out of it! It’s a good way to get some exercise—and some nostalgia.
Indulge Their Nerdy Side
Get your heads together to solve an escape room puzzle, like those at Go Dream. It’s a unique team-building activity that also creates fun family memories. Create a quiz full of family trivia so your teens can learn more about their relatives. Take advantage of student discounts at museums. Costumes aren’t just for Halloween: throw a geeky party dressed up as their favorite characters.
Listen carefully to your teens’ moods and interests. It’s a good way to discover what they’re passionate about. From there, you can build an event, large or small, that’s customized to them.