Protective Factor 2You’ll probably be making decisions soon about the activities your child will be doing this summer. Will your kids be going to summer camps? Will you sign them up for swimming lessons? Will your kids be playing on sports teams this summer?

As you consider what your kids will be doing this summer, there’s one thing I’d like you to consider. It happens to be the number one protective factor that will help keep your child feeling emotionally stable and close to you, it will help your kids be more successful academically, and may prevent them from pregnancy and alcohol and drug abuse as a teen.

What is this magic bullet? How much will it cost you? How will you squeeze it in? Click Here

The #1 protective factor is time spent with you as a family. It doesn’t have to cost money and yes, it does take time and commitment to making sure that it happens on a weekly basis.

So, as you plan your child’s summer activities, be sure to leave time in your schedule for one, two or even three times a week when your family is spending time together. Put the time on the calendar just like you would any other activity that you’re planning so it doesn’t fall through the cracks.

The type of acitivity you choose is less important than just taking the time to be together. It can be as simple as just hanging out, going on bike rides or walks, camping in the back yard, going on picnics, attending concerts, playing your child’s favorite game, playing catch in the back yard… Just talk with your kids about what would be fun to do together.

Here’s why it’s so important…

When the Search Instutute did research to determine the most important developmental assets that will help young people grow up to be healthy, caring, and responsible, these were the two factors that were deemed #1 and #2 of the 40 assets discovered:

The #1 Developmental Asset: Parents who provide high levels of love and support to their kids.

The #2 Developmental Asset: Parents who communicate positively and listen carefully to their kids.

This means spending time with your children.

When children are surveyed, the one thing kids want most from their parents is time together.

Bill Doherty,a Department of Family Social Science professor at the University of Minnesota, has found in his research that time spent together as a family is the number one protective factor in keeping kids drug and alcohol free and safe from teen pregnancy.

After decades of research on children and families, psychologist and author Dr. David Walsh, recommends spending twice as much time with your kids and half as much money on them. Walsh says that your children will be emotionally healthier as a result.

Children whose fathers spend time doing activities with them and mothers who frequently communicate with their kids by listening and asking questions, were found to have higher academic success.

Are you convinced?

Let’s all make a commitment together to make family time happen this summer. I’m committing to two times per week. How about you? Just share your commitment in the comments below!

And if you haven’t picked up a copy of my free book, 20 Great Ways to Raise Great Kids yet, you may want to do so. in Chapter 17, Family Fun Nights: Have a Blast with Your Kids at Home, Debra Immergut, a senior editor at FamilyFun magazine shares unique ideas for activities and crafts that parents and kids can do together for little to no cost. Here’s the link to click now to receive your free copy of my book:

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