TV Off, Fun On

Family night is more about the idea of spending quality time together than the family night activity itself. One of the most effective ways to strengthen the family bond is by setting aside one evening where all other events and obligations take the back seat. As for what to do on family night – the only real requirement is for the family to be together.

Family movie night

Turn off the cell phones, gather the kids and try these ideas for a fun family night!

1

Family game night

Spend any regular evening relaxing and creating memories with classic games like Monopoly, cards, chess, Pictionary, charades or any other family favorite. It's really not about the game, nor does it matter who wins or loses; it's about enriching your life with the people around you.

2Family sports night

A night filled with low-impact sports like mini-golf, ping pong, playing around the world basketball or bowling is perfect for the active family fun night. If you have a large brood, start a tradition of flag football or maybe kick around a soccer ball. You know the saying: the family that plays together stays together.

3Family movie night

Pick a movie, whether it's classic or a new release, and settle in for a relaxing family movie night. Go all out by turning your family room into a theater, and having the kids print out movie tickets and play the usher of the cinema. Don't forget the popcorn and after the movie is over, talk about what everyone liked or didn't like about the movie – you never know what valuable life lessons might sneak into family movie night.

4Family archives night

It's time to blow the dust off those old family photo albums or pop in the family movies to remember times gone by. Looking at photographs of events, places and people is an easy way to teach children about their heritage and about themselves. Mom and Dad might get a tear or two when they see just how much little Johnny has grown.

5Family craft night

You don't have to be Martha Stewart to engage the household in a family craft. Find a project that is age appropriate or can be customized for the young ones. Consider crafts involving clay or dough, beads, making paper airplanes or putting together a collage or vision board. Whichever craft you choose, remember that it's the creative process that's important and not the finished product.

6Family baking night

Think of the wonderful smells that will fill the house after a family night of baking cookies, breads or muffins. Assign a job for each member of the family, or break them up into teams to be sure that everyone participates.

7Family chore night

Working around the house doesn't have to be a drag if you know that everyone in the family is contributing to the effort. Play mood music, incorporate the idea of fairy tales like Cinderella and provide incentive like stickers or, for the older kids, maybe money. At the end, you can all sit back and enjoy the house that was transformed into a tidy home.

8Family talent show

Hold your own 'American Idol,' complete with song, dance, dramatic lighting and microphones. If the drama of the theatre is more your style, have the kids write their own play, make the set and act it out on a makeshift stage. This is a great way to give your aspiring superstars the attention which, in the end, is what they are always after.

Family night is about your own unit of loved ones and blocking everything else out, if only for a few hours.

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Tags: family night

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