Sometimes the simplest things serve as powerful reminders.
This past Sunday as my young friend was heading to teach her Sunday School class, she shared that the “visual” called for playing the game of Jacks. This made her a bit nervous. In preparation for the lesson, she had practiced throughout the week, sometimes with greater success than others. She hadn’t played in years. How would it go? And how would it go when the students tried it?
The brief conversation reminded me how important a grandparent’s role of teacher truly is. Yes, we are to teach the “important things” – who God is, what He has done, biblical truths and principles, — but our role also calls for us to teach from our experience – academics, hobbies, social skills, and fun and games.
10 Things to Teach Your Grandchildren
As my young mom friend shared, she hadn’t played Jacks in years, and she hadn’t yet even thought about teaching it to her children (four very young boys)! How would she have time to think about such a game! A grandparent, however, could do such a thing, and the game of Jacks is a great game for working on eye/hand coordination.
How to shuffle a deck of cards
Amaze your grandchildren with your card shuffling skills. There’s nothing much cooler to a young child.
Young children sometimes get confused about the whole counting and hiding their eyes thing, but that doesn’t stop them from having fun. Just get out there and play! (Hide-and-seek is also a fun indoor game.)
Teach your grandchild to whistle
Whistling fascinates children. Teach them a basic whistling technique or if you know how, teach your grandchild to use their fingers for a louder whistle. This is one thing my son begged my own father to teach him when he was young. It’s now one of my son’s favorite memories of his grandfather.
Make a glass sing
When was the last time you made a glass sing? Impress your grandchildren by tracing the rim of a drinking glass with a wet finger. Then listen as it sings.
Make a raisin box sing
This is one I had almost forgotten. Recently I introduced my young grandson to small boxes of raisins as a mid-morning snack. Picking up the empty box to throw it away, I remembered how, as kids, we used to blow in one end of the empty box to make it “sing.” We now blow in each-and-every box! He doesn’t have the hang of it yet, but he’s working on it.
How to set the table
Children love to set the table especially if you use two forks! Get out the fancy china and all the accessories. Teach your grandchildren how to set a proper table and to use the correct utensils. Whether you are setting the table for a family holiday dinner or just eating sandwiches, grab some fancy napkins and have fun while the children are learning. For even more fun, let the children decorate the table, too.
Teach your grandchildren how to make a proper introduction. If you’re a little rusty yourself, visit a site such as The Emily Post Institute for a quick refresher first. (This is a good time to add in other skills such as looking someone in the eye while you are speaking and using a firm handshake.)
How to tie a tie
Who knew there were so many ways to tie a tie? Teach your grandchild how to tie a simple knot and stop there, or add to the fun by trying to see how many different knots you both can learn. (For ideas visit Ties.com or do a YouTube search.)
The art of writing a thank-you note
Thank-you notes have all but gone out of style. With our busy schedules and increased access to technology very few thank-you notes get written. It is easy to teach children how to write a note. Teach them this new-to-them skill and at the same time teach them that the thank-you is important.