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December Blog 2022: The Importance of Family and Building Memories.

December 7, 2022

 

The Importance of Family

Why is Family so important?

At this time of year the emphasis is on family and the extended family.

Family is the most powerful foundation for the future.

There is no such thing as the perfect family. Families come in all shapes and sizes. The make-up of every household is different in some way.

Most families move between function and dysfunction. This is because life events impact upon them. For example, the cost of living, poor health, illness, separation, divorce, and death.

The alternative to family is isolation. Children will not be able to navigate life without a close group around them.

As the saying goes…”it takes a village to raise a child”, people they know, know them and who they can trust. So that they can become that resilient, robust, and reliable child.

It goes without saying that children in loving families do better in relationships, love, stability, and life.

Family is about everything, togetherness, love, support, security, care, happiness, holiday, fun, home, and memories.

 

Shared family experiences.

 

Building memories

 

Memory begins in the womb as the new born reacts to their mother’s voice.

It is an important key to children’s cognitive development, improving abilities such as planning, attention and problem solving.

 

We can support memory development with the following:

 

  • Giving children first-hand experiences.

 

  • Build family traditions that are repeated year after year. Christmas is just the best time of year to do this.

 

  • Provide a running commentary about what you are doing. Talk about the moment and building a narrative.

 

  • Letting them do things for themselves.

 

  • Repetition of familiar stories and nursery rhymes.

 

  • Using actions and signs to increase physical memory.

 

  • Create multiple pathways for memory with a multi-sensory approach. Use smell, texture, and colour to enhance a memory. For example, looking at shapes of clouds, what might they smell, feel, taste like?

 

  • Play memory games.

 

  • Retell past events.

 

  • Recall experiences.

 

  • Help your child visualise, so they can make mind pictures.

 

  • Capture photographs together.

 

  • Draw pictures.

 

  • Bring home a souvenir, you can revisit a trip or holiday. Use maps and photographs to develop the child’s understanding.

 

Christmas Activities to improve and build memory

This is an endless list. The importance of these activities is to repeat them every year. Once they are established it is lovely to add a new

activity to your list.

  • Start early with stir up Sunday, to make your pudding and cake.
  • Remember to have Advent Calenders.
  • Write to Santa.
  • Go to the switching on of town lights.
  • Buy the tree and decorate together. Listen to Christmas music while you do this.
  • Make cards.
  • String popcorn and cranberry garlands for the birds.
  • Take Christmas photographs and put new ones each year in an album.
  • Build traditions for Christmas Eve, maybe a carol service and ringing the church bells.
  • Leaving out stockings, what you leave for Father Christmas can be repeated every year.
  • Read the same Christmas stories, have the regular film showing of Elf.
  • Wrap presents together.
  • Think about the structure of your Christmas Day. What can you repeat every year? What can you involve your child with?

 

Have fun together building these memories.

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