Why involve your children with grandparents and seniors?
Why is time with grandparents or senior friends of benefit to children?
The underlying goal of every person in life is to make connections. We want and need to feel connected to others. We especially want to be connected to our families. It is worth the effort needed to create situations for children to make these connections.
Seniors and grandparents often have time they are willing to give. It takes time to make connections and build relationships. While a child might be entertained by a movie or a toy, this does not give help them develop any needed connections. Grandparents who are willing to give a time investment. Take that same toy or movie and involve a grandparent to discuss, play and mentor and the whole experience deepens since connections are formed. Senior adults often have time to listen to songs, tell stories, and play games together. When a child feels heard or paid attention to it is very validating. They feel important to someone. They feel connect
Being around seniors and the elderly helps children and ourselves develop empathy. Children are egocentric. They think and live as if the world revolves around them and their needs. Many elderly have evident needs. Children can learn to think about others with practice. “We can be quieter so grandpa can rest.” “We can get that for grandmother since it is hard for her to go up and down stairs.” We learn a lot more about manners by using them then we do just talking about them.
Seniors involved with children see many benefits. They were able to do a service and develop a connection. This gives them a greater sense of purpose and accomplishment. Most have skills and time that are underutilized. Research shows are willing to extend themselves more physically and mentally when there are children involved. Their days are often less lonely and truly brightened when children are included.