Awesome ways you can create lasting childhood memories that children will remember for the rest of their lives.
As I’m watching my own children grow up, I’m remembering things from my own childhood, and the most magical time of youth was around the age of 5-7.
Some are happy, some are sad, and some are lessons that you never forget.
Out of all the memories we have, which ones do we carry into our adult life?
Today the pressure on parents to meet the nutritional, medical, emotional, and educational needs of our children is very high and unrealistic.
At the end of the day, parents need to ask themselves, are we creating memories/things that kids remember?
There are, of course, the large events such as Disney cruises and trips to Europe that will create strong memories, but are these the events that make a significant impact on our upbringing?
My family always taught me that you don’t need “things” to be happy. It is enough to have each other.
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9 Things That Kids Remember From Their Childhood
One of the most important things for children is having their parents show up for their special moments. Parent involvement is very healthy for children.
Research shows that when parents engage in school activities, student achievement is directly affected as well as behaviour and attendance.
So not only will you be part of their school event memories, but you’ll also be a part of their successful school career!
Be it school concerts or a parent’s student show and tell, each and every event that the child participates in is important.
Ask your school if you can volunteer in the school library or help set up for an event such as a school play or the Terry Fox run.
Work gets in the way and we all need to make money, but if every effort is made to attend these events, the child will remember.
I definitely understand having to work during school events and concerts, and it’s not always possible, but if you can, try to make as many of those special events as you can!
The simple act of being silly, building things, and playing with your children is enough to create many lasting memories.
It also strengthens the bond between parents and children, which in turn creates children who are more willing to listen!
Play is a very important part of childhood and with the increase in screens available to children today, play is even more important than ever.
As hard as we try to give them the tools they need for a successful upbringing, sometimes the most important thing we can give them is the time to play and use their imagination.
In our family, we play a lot of board games on the weekends and backyard games in the summer.
Children will remember their big moments, and having them celebrated just makes things that much better.
I remember in grade 5, I got a report card with all A’s and as a result, I was able to go to the shop and pick out a new stuffed animal.
It wasn’t anything crazy, and certainly not expensive, but I remember this event 20+ years later.
So remember to celebrate those achievements and make it a big deal!
Stick the award on the fridge with the fridge magnets, hang the medals in their rooms, and even provide a simple reward for things that your kids are proud of.
(And never underestimate the power of balloons, they make EVERYTHING more fun)
Making All Children Feel Special
It can feel challenging to make children feel special individually if you have more than one child.
I feel it is very important to find connections with each child.
I like to practice daily affirmations with my child every day, and that is a special moment in time that helps make my child feel special and good.
Find those areas where you can truly engage with each other and make sure to point out to each child regularly how special they are to you.
Just remember that you don’t need money and “stuff” to make kids feel special, but rather your attention and time.
Eating together every day is really important for children. It makes this connection every day that this family is whole and we all care about each other.
Sitting together and eating dinner, even if in silence, is in itself very important.
Children will not remember each meal that was shared at the table, but they will remember that dinner was an important part of the day and that everyone sat together at least once a day.
Traditions are activities that you engage in again and again. They can be big or small, but the main thing is they are consistent.
Family traditions are always memorable.
Whether you go camping every summer at your favourite beach or you have a huge Thanksgiving dinner every year with every family member that you have, those repetitive events are very memorable.
Traditions have so many benefits to children such as:
- Help With Self Identity
- Strengthen Family Bonds
- Provides Comfort And Security
- Teaches Values
- Pass along knowledge Of Culture And Religion
- Connect Multiple Generations
You can create daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly traditions. A daily ritual could be as simple as a secret handshake—super fun for little ones, and a moment worth remembering.
Hear Your Children
Kids will remember if you listened to their crazy stories, and even more so, they will remember if you engaged in their insane conversation starters.
I know it’s not always fun to talk about delicious toast for 20 minutes, but kids will remember these moments and will appreciate the fact that you were there to listen and engage.
It can get enjoyable to talk about delicious toast if you, the adult, make it fun too.
Make the boring conversation into a game. Simple stuff like saying, “Is the delicious toast still delicious if we covered it in green slime?”
Then the kids are sure to laugh about slime-covered toast, and who knows, that could be a story they will tell their kids one day.
Read To Them
Books are fantastic for bonding.
Creating those memories with magical stories and letting their imaginations soar is genuinely one of the most amazing things that children can remember from their childhood.
We read a story every night before bedtime to our boys. I know the days of bedtime stories will end soon, and I try not to think about that, so it is important to ME that we keep doing bedtime stories as long as we can.
Kids Remember Things Differently Than Adults Do
Adults may categorize recollections, such as “Remember that fantastic restaurant we went to on our honeymoon?” or “Did I forget our anniversary?” Memory, however, is more than a mental image, according to Nora Newcombe, a professor of psychology at Temple University and co-director of their Infant & Child Laboratory. “Unpacking memories into various categories has been one of the major achievements of psychology and neuroscience over the last few decades.”
Explicit memory and implicit memory are the two types of memory, according to Newcombe. Both are subsets of long-term memory that emerge at a young age. The following is how they differ:
Explicit Memory is a term that refers to a type of memory that requires conscious recollection and is usually linked to a certain time and location – the autobiographical form of memory you’re familiar with.
Implicit Memory is a term that refers to the ability to remember It is more of an unconscious, emotional recall than it is about particular occurrences.
Do your children recall the pancakes you used to make for them on Saturdays? Explicit. When people pass an IHOP, do they get those nice, fuzzy feelings? Implicit. Your capacity to recall what breakfast you had this morning? Questionable.
What Is Childhood Amnesia and How Does It Affect You?
Around the age of two, children begin to acquire explicit memories, although the bulk of their memories are remaining implicit until they are roughly seven. It’s referred to as “childhood amnesia” by academics like Carole Peterson of the Canada’s Memorial University of Newfoundland.
She claims that at the age of three, or about preschool age, explicit memories begin to become more regular, detailed, and adult-like. Your childrens memory is similar to yours at the age of 6 or 7. (Perhaps your 8-year-old can help you recall what you had for breakfast?)
The Most Important Thing
The most important thing that children will remember is the love you showed to them during their childhood, even if you were at the office during the week and home on the weekends.
It is not enough to simply say the words “I Love You’. It is so important to show your love on a daily basis for your children.
Even when the days are hard, and the listening is just not happening, you have to show your love. Let your love lead the way to better connections and strong bonds.
You can show love, even in the most challenging parenting situations by using positive parenting (like inductive discipline)strategies.
This can help not ruin the relationship you have built with your child.
Show your love, and the memories will come naturally. Creating beautiful memories from childhood does not have to be expensive.
All you really need to give is your love and your time.
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