I have noticed a trend that kids are afraid or stay away from older people. I love spending time with seniors. Since I was raised alongside my Abuelos, I believe teaching children to respect and celebrate older people can have a strong impact on their future. Below are some tips to create easy ways your tweens and teens can celebrate seniors.
But first, how do you act around seniors? Hmmm- have you thought about it? More than ever kids watch our behaviors for cues about their own. If you don’t respect or welcome seniors around your home in some way, your kids won’t learn how much seniors have to share with us. There is a sense of history and purpose when you listen to the experiences of older people. In my home we try to follow a schedule to have our children spend time with their grandparents or other family. It’s not always easy as when kids get older they often rather hang out with the amigos instead of hearing what their grandparents or other seniors have to say. So my top tip is start EARLY. Don’t wait until kids are in their tweens and teens to start forcing relationships with older people.
Have you created a special occasion or celebrated the seniors in your life? Sometimes we get caught up with kid birthday parties that we don’t celebrate the milestone of our seniors getting older. You can create all sorts of easy and low-cost themes to celebrate older people such as Hollywood Stars, You’re my ‘Sunshine’ and Disco themes that inspire dancing and just having fun.
Related post: Tween Birthday Ideas
Quick Tips for Creating Special Senior Moments
- Create a schedule. Even if you don’t make it every Sunday for a family dinner, at least you have a goal to get there.
- If your seniors aren’t nearby, create a calling schedule. Even though our grandparents are less than 20 miles away, we don’t make it over to their home every week. Now we have our daughters calling at least once a week for updates and catch up.
- When are their birthdays or special anniversaries? Are there any milestones coming? Plan for simple celebrations. Be sure to have lots of pictures around and extended friends and families. Many seniors enjoy having small reunions to catch up.
- Don’t make a big fuss. Again, keep it simple.
- Print out photos and share them often! Sounds simple but it’s actually not done by so many (especially me!). My number one request from grandparents and special ‘Tias & Tios’ is to print out allllll those pictures on my phone!
Our family recently celebrated our 88 and 90-year old special grandparents. We chose a ‘Hollywood Stars’ theme from Party City. With that we had mucho pictures around, wore hats, took tons of family photos and created a virtual ‘movie of their life.’ Everyone brought something to share and we really did keep it simple.
Share your tips to celebrating seniors- we would love to hear your ideas!
As a mother of twin tweens in 2011 and an active Girl Scout Troop leader, Cristy realized there was a need to develop bilingual digital content and foster a community facing the challenges of raising kids after first grade. That year she founded and remains co-Publisher of Los Tweens & Teens, to support multicultural parents and mentors with content related to raising Gen Z- tweens & teens ages 7-18. Through the Los Tweens & Teens LIVE events such as Teens & Me – the growing team aims to provide our community with essential resources from chats with therapists to battle anxiety and bullying, to understanding social media and technology.
A New Jersey native of Cuban decent, Cristy is a board member of Amigos For Kids – a non-profit organization dedicated to preventing child abuse in the South Florida community. She is a teenage cancer survivor and speaks nationally at conferences and volunteers with cancer-awareness organizations such as St. Jude Children’s Hospital and the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of South Florida.