Three reasons to have more great conversations with your grandkids
BY KATE JEROME
It’s no secret that kids thrive when they engage in meaningful conversations with adults. But in our busy world, conversations with children tend toward the practical (Did you pick up your toys?) rather than the profound (Keep trying even when it’s hard)!
But is it time to recommit to the art of intergenerational conversation? Current trends say YES! Here are three more good reasons why it’s important to carve out time for great conversations between you and your favorite little ones.
Meaningful conversations help kids become more effective learners.
Education is changing. In past, the development of a child’s abilities in core subjects such as reading, math, and science was job number one in the classroom. While this cognitive skill emphasis is still vitally important, we now know it’s not enough. That’s because kids also need nurturing in social/emotional learning and academic attitudes. Why? This is how they learn about such things as self-control, persistence, resilience, and grit. It also helps them develop a curiosity for lifelong learning. And who better to assist with this type of instruction than caring adults who are willing to share their own experiences that model the way?
Meaningful conversations are mutually beneficial.
Populations are aging. More than thirty years have been added to average American life expectancy since the early 1900s. Yet even as the chasm gets wider between the oldest and youngest on the planet, conversations between generations remain important as ever. Why? Simply put, caring adults provide the sense of worth and emotional support that kids need…and kids provide the sense of relevancy and purpose that adults crave. The virtuous cycle benefits all involved!
Meaningful conversations can pop technology-induced bubbles.
Technology is ubiquitous. And our kids need to be technologically literate to succeed in a future world that teeters beyond our own imagination. However, constant access to instant information can give kids a false sense of expertise. Conversations with experienced adults often provide a check and balance. Savvy parents and grandparents know that a gentle walk down the “How do you know?” lane may be one of the most important conversations an adult can have with a child.
About the Author – Kate Jerome
Kate Jerome is the author and series creator of Arcadia Publishing’s new Read Together/Do Together™ children’s books that are designed to jump-start conversations between kids and their favorite adults.
A seasoned publishing executive and award-winning author, Kate recently completed a Fellowship at Stanford University’s Distinguished Careers Institute and is a passionate supporter of intergenerational communication. See her TEDx talk to learn more.