Little Known Ways to Communicate With Your Tween

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by Nicole on February 25, 2011 · 4 comments

in The Home Stretch (10-14 years)

Today’s pre-teens are no longer kids. They have earned a new name: “Tween.” This is the age when your child is tottering between being a full-blown teenager and still having the needs and desires of a child. It is also a time when connecting with your child can become incredibly challenging. Here are some less traditional ideas to help you make that connection.

One of the easiest ways to stay connected with your Tween and the rest of your family is to plan a family game night. Do this regularly, at least twice a month, and have it set in “stone” on the calendar. Of course, things will come up, but you need to make this a habit. You will be surprised how much you will learn about your middle-school child during these activities.

Find out what your tween likes, and get involved. This does not mean you need to spend hours playing X-box, but if your son loves cooking, then take them to a local restaurant to tour the kitchen or meet the chef, if this is allowed. If you have a reader, spend an afternoon at a bookstore browsing together, and ask questions about the books they are reading. If your girl loves horses, buy tickets to an upcoming horse show to have a mom and daughter date. For a young man, consider a monster truck show or major league sporting event. Simply showing that you understand their likes and dislikes and are taking the time to accommodate them will help them open up.

Remember, sitting down and saying “let’s talk” rarely works with kids this age. Instead, you have to get them involved and let them open up on their own. If you keep making the opportunity possible and are actively listening, they will start talking.

About Nicole

Nicole Harms is a freelance writer and a busy mom to two preschool daughters. She received a bachelor’s degree in education from Maranatha Baptist Bible College, but after four years in the classroom she turned in the chalk for the virtual pen. When not researching or writing she is busy chasing her two daughters around or traveling.

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

TPSicotte February 25, 2011 at 10:05 am

Good information.Studies show kids of parents who are involved in their lives are far less likely to have behavior problems related to issues like drugs and alcohol. Great tip.

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Savannah March 1, 2011 at 9:56 am

It’s true, so everyone be involved!

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Angie February 26, 2011 at 4:15 pm

Family game nights are a great way to connect. I think that once a month is not enough. I suggest once a week to once every other week. Have games that the whole family will like. Or let each person have a turn at picking out the game. This way everyone gets a turn doing something they like.

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Savannah March 1, 2011 at 9:48 am

If you have the time and money, make an outing one night and let the kids each pick out a game at the store. Then you’ll have plenty to choose from, and everyone will have a favorite that they’ll want to play.

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