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Family Activities for Seniors, Adults, and Children: Better Bonding

Family Activities for Seniors, Adults, and Children: Better Bonding

One of the best things about having family is having fun and bonding. Indeed, a family is more than just a group of people related through blood. For Filipinos, a strong nuclear family is one of the pillars of the country’s traditional values. While children are often the focus of the household, sometimes the elderly feel left out. Here are some great ideas for family activities for seniors, adults, and children to do together.

family activities for seniors

Family Activities for Seniors and the Rest of the Family

Board games

You can never go wrong with a classic board game. Before the advent of computers, smartphones, and video game consoles, board games, and card games were great ways to play together. Best of all, these games do not require electricity or multiple gadgets– just you, some friends, and a bit of imagination.

Adults and seniors may take this as an opportunity to pass down their old pastimes and hobbies to their children and grandchildren. For example, many competitive chess players were first introduced to the game by their parents or grandparents. These games require a strategy that keeps the mind sharp, for both the young and old.

However, some board games may not be suitable for very young children. The small pieces are a choking hazard while some game mechanics may be difficult for them to understand. Check the box for the recommended ages and number of players needed.

Sports

A family that plays together, stays together. Doing sports or other physical activities together has several benefits. First, it burns calories and gets the heart pumping which improves physical health. Next, sports offer a chance to be competitive and can serve as an opportunity to build skills and self-esteem. Lastly, many sports can accommodate an entire family or two different households.

Sports are one of the best family activities for seniors to engage their minds and body. However, not all sports are suitable for the elderly. If there is a history of fall, injury, or heart problems, vigorous activity may not be the best option. Avoid sports that require a fast pace, heavy objects, or contact (e.g. tackling or hitting).

Reading and storytelling

In the past, storytelling was one of the earliest forms of passing down history. In fact, before the development of written language, communities relied on oral tradition which includes storytelling, folklore, and songs. One of the earliest bonding opportunities between grandparents and children is reading bedtime stories.

Telling classic fairytales and unique stories are both great ways to connect generations and create lasting memories. For added fun, try storytelling outdoors with a bonfire or simply a starry sky. The fresh air will do wonders and help with family bonding.

Art projects

While we may not all be Picassos or da Vincis, everyone can do art. Artistic expression is important for people of all ages and skill levels. Fortunately, art can be done individually or as a group. It is not limited to drawing or painting on a canvas. Other forms of art include sculpting, crafting, sewing, dancing, and acting. Don’t be afraid to show off your creativity and final work! Be it a collage hung on the wall or a choreographed dance number at the next family reunion.

Movie night

There are many movies that are hallmarks of each generation. Despite the age gap between millennials, baby boomers, and everyone in between, there are plenty of options to choose from. Pick a movie that everyone in the family will enjoy. Animated movies are often the best choice for the whole family to watch together.

If you can’t go out to the theater, bring the theater experience to your home instead. Incorporate roleplay and tap into your creativity by printing prop tickets and having a few members of the family act as an usher and other theater staff. A trip to the movie wouldn’t be complete without popcorn and drinks, so don’t forget to stock up on your favorites.

Picnic outing

Food, family, and fresh air are a great combination for a weekend or special occasion. As a family, preparing food together is already an effective way to bond. Older members of the family can pass down recipes and teach younger members how to cook for the first time. Additionally, prepping meals at home is healthier and more affordable than ordering out.

Next, plan the ideal spot for your family picnic ahead of time. Some parks or recreational centers may be crowded or require a reservation, so it is best to be prepared. If swimming is on the agenda, be sure to wear the right attire and pack enough sunscreen for the whole family.

Make fun videos

Lastly, one of the newest family activities for seniors and their families to do together is recording covers or funny videos. Despite being a stereotypical Gen Z or millennial thing, more and more seniors are hopping on board with the trend. Reacting to videos and making your own is both a creative and social outlet. It is a wholesome activity for the young and the young at heart– and even family pets can join in on the fun!

Key Takeaways

In summary, these are just some ideas for family activities for seniors and their families. Spending time together fosters unity, stimulates the mind, and creates lasting memories for years to come. Many of these activities can be done at home and are affordable.

Learn more about Healthy Aging here.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Sources

Benefits of Physical Activity https://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/basics/pa-health/index.htm Accessed February 27, 2021

Physical Activity and Health: A Report of the Surgeon General https://www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/sgr/olderad.htm Accessed February 27, 2021

Families that play together stay together: Investigating family bonding through video games https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/1461444818767667 Accessed February 27, 2021

Family Relationships and Well-Being https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5954612/ The Role of Family During Older Adults’ Living Transitions: Implications for Helping Professionals and Family Counselors https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/1066480718809418 Accessed February 27, 2021

Accessed February 27, 2021

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Written by Stephanie Nicole Nera, RPh, PharmD Updated Mar 08
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