As children get older, they may find themselves drawn further and further away from hometown areas and places, which can be troubling. While it’s natural to want to explore new places, it’s also possible and very rewarding to form memories nearby! Here are some tips to help your kids stay connected to your local community.
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1. Make Memories
Create memories while you can. Spend time exploring your community with your children at least once a week. Make the memories significant by providing treats and taking the opportunity to bond and play with your family. Don’t forget to take pictures of every outing; you can talk about them later, and even give the pictures to your child when they get older.
2. Encourage Friendships
One of the best ways for kids to get involved in community activities is by exploring them with others their age. Whether it’s doing a service project or just spending an afternoon on the town, when kids hang out with each other they’re more likely to form strong attachments to the places and activities they pursue. When they can find a good place to hang out, they’ll become a natural part of the community nearby.
3. Watch the Local News Together
Most people watch a favorite national news program. While these programs cover the most popular stories of the day, they must leave many stories on the drawing table if they consider it a “local” story as opposed to a national story. Watch local community news with your children at night before or after the national news. You’ll hear about local businesses, local policy changes, and local crimes. Odds are you’ll even recognize some of the people and places you’ve been!
4. Visit Your Favorite Small Businesses
Go find some local hidden gems with your children, including:
- Ice Cream Shops
- Book Shops
- Antique Shops
Not only will you create fond memories, but you’ll support local businesses in your community. You will also get the chance to build relationships with your favorite business owners and their children.
Community creates a sense of self and belonging. You don’t want your child to forget where they came from as they create their own path in life. They can take the beautiful things from their local community to their later endeavors, and you’ll have something you can always remember together later in life.