Intergenerational Activities: Ways for the Whole Family to Have Fun
As a senior, it may be tough to imagine all the ways in which the whole family — from grandparents to parents down to teenagers and young kids — can have fun together. But truth be told, there are a number of ways for different generations to come together and have a good time. Additionally, intergenerational activities have a bunch of family-related benefits too. So if you’re looking forward to the next time the family visit for a holiday, or pop round for a visit, we’ve rounded up a few activities the whole family can get involved in.
Lawn games have made a come-back in recent years, and with the likes of croquet and bowls back in popularity, many can enjoy their simple yet endless fun. With these games now ‘cool’ again, the younger generation are keen to get involved, making them the perfect family activity to get everyone up and moving.
Not only have these games resurfaced as a fun afternoon activity, but they’re also a low impact form of exercise, known to improve fitness, coordination and confidence. These are beneficial not only to the older generations looking to maintain their overall health, but also the younger generations looking to improve their health. If your mobility isn’t what it used to be and you are unable to participate, it’s still a great excuse to get outside with the family and watch them have a go.
While educated guesses have placed the origins of playing cards all the way back to 12th Century China, card games continue to be a timeless hobby for all ages. Whether it’s teaching your grandchildren how to play classic games such as Rummy, Go Fish or Solitaire, or getting the whole family involved in a game of Crazy Eights or Cheat, card games can provide an endless amount of fun for everyone.
Just as much as card games are fun, so too are they beneficial to your brain. Research has proven that partaking in activities that stimulate your brain can help reduce the risk of contracting memory and cognitive related illnesses. While playing card games isn’t the only way to keep your brain at its best, it’s certainly one fun way to do so while enjoying the company of your family.
Planting, weeding and harvesting in your or a communal garden, is a great opportunity for the family to get outdoors together. While you as the older generation get to pass down your knowledge about growing flowers, vegetables and herbs, your grandchildren get to learn, participate and eventually see the results of their efforts.
Children enjoy seeing things grow, and gardening is the perfect way for you to spend some quality time with them, while they come to understand the importance of caring for nature, how to work in a team and even understand the benefits of eating all the healthy veggies that they themselves have planted. Even if you are unable to get down on your knees and physically show your grandchildren how to sow seeds, you can facilitate their efforts as you teach them the basics.
A suitable way to teach the younger generation compassion for others, and the importance of giving back to the community for the benefit of those less fortunate than themselves, volunteering is both meaningful and engaging for all members of the family. Whether it’s spending time giving shelter animals some love and attention, collecting and donating non-perishable foods to a safe haven, or starting a collection for a charity of your choice, you will get the chance to spend time with your family while they learn to give of their time and resources to help others.
As Help Guide emphasizes, “Children watch everything you do. By giving back to the community, you’ll show them firsthand how volunteering makes a difference and how good it feels to help other people and animals and enact change.” While the younger generation come to understand the importance of giving, you as the older generation get to spend meaningful time with your loved ones, and even help you maintain your social activity.
Whether your mobility is limited and you make use of aged care support services, or not, there a number of ways the entire family can have an entertaining morning or afternoon together. So the next time you plan to get everyone together, consider these activities so that both young and old can participate. Aside from teaching the youngsters a thing or two, you’ll also be actively improving that all important bond between the generations.