Children have a unique opportunity when living with their grandparents. While parents are supposed to provide structure and guidance, grandparents impart a different kind of wisdom on their grandchildren. Grandparents have many important life lessons to pass along to the next generation. These life lessons can include everything from cooking and other skills to offering a different perspective on life.
Keeping Traditions Alive
Many grandparents are a link to family traditions that parents may not have continued. Grandparents, especially those with a rich heritage, may have first-hand knowledge of traditions dating back hundreds of years. Grandchildren will likely be fascinated by some of these traditions and may even be inspired to pass them along to their children in the future. These traditions may include colorful costumes or special recipes. Grandparents ofter a connection to traditions that cannot be fully grasped from textbooks or even online video clips.
Grandparents have lived through many different experiences, some unique to their lifetime. These experiences often resulted in valuable life lessons. Some of these lessons can be passed along to grandchildren. Some common life lessons grandparents can pass onto their grandchildren include:
- The Value of a Dollar – Grandparents are less likely to be dependent on credit cards. It’s a good bet that grandparents understand the importance of saving and can teach this lesson by example. This includes making wise purchases and understanding that you can’t always have everything you want.
- The Importance of Appreciating Friends and Family – Grandparents understand that time is fleeting. This often includes an appreciation of those you have in your life such as your family and friends. Grandparents can help children to appreciate their parents and those around them more than they probably do right now.
- Finding a Balance – Children tend to look for the fun things in life, whether it be playing video games for hours and hours or watching TV or online videos. Grandparents tend to have an ability to find a proper balance for things. This may include getting out to enjoy a beautiful day or trying new things to find new interests other than spending hours in front of the computer.
Grandparents have a wealth of stories to share. Sure, some of them have been told over and over. Embellishment is a right of old age, but each of the stories grandparents tend to recite repeatedly have certain gems of wisdom in them. Children tend to have the patience to listen to these stories and possibly learn the “hidden” lessons contained within these tales. Many of these stories include interesting tidbits about family members past and present. There are likely many family members in the past children may not have either met or heard of. Some of these family stories are more like colorful history lessons that provide a better understanding of the family’s history, including struggles and triumphs.
Parents tend to get busy with taking care of the house, going back and forth to work and other daily tasks of life. This doesn’t leave a lot of time for listening. Grandparents, on the other hand, tend to have more time to smell the roses and listen to what children have to say. Children like to know that what they say and think matters. The same is true for grandparents. In today’s busy world, it is refreshing when someone actually has the time to listen to what you’re saying and takes the time to not only acknowledge what you’re saying, but engage you by asking questions and showing a true interest. Grandparents just might be able to teach the value of listening to their grandchildren, a trait that can come in handy throughout life.
While parents love their children, grandparents tend to have an easier time expressing these feelings. Grandparents who teach children to say, “I love you” are also teaching children that it is alright to express such feelings without feeling awkward or embarrassed. Grandparents tend to create a situation where children feel comfortable saying what’s on their mind. This ability to express feelings creates a special relationship between grandparents and grandchildren. This is certainly a lesson children can take with them into adulthood.
An argument can be made that grandparents are part of a generation with a different set of values that their grandchildren can learn when living with their grandparents. Grandparents are something to be treasured. They are a wealth of information and can be a child’s best friend. Parents should make every effort to include grandparents in family activities so that the wisdom of another generation can be passed along to the next generation.
Author Bio: Tom writes for Assisted Living Today, a leading source of information on a range of topics related to elderly care and Fort Worth, TX Care Homes.
So, do you involve the Grandparents in your homeschooling experience? If so, how? Aren’t these tips a great springboard of ideas to get you started, if you don’t? Please comment below.