I have been thinking a lot about the role grandparents play in the lives of families today.
For many years we became somewhat separated from our immediate families due to a variety of reasons- jobs, life style choices and numerous other issues.
But, I am seeing more of a trend today for families to rely on each other again. I would say economics have much to do with this, but I feel quite strongly that there are other, more emotional factors. I think life experience is being appreciated as well as we need each other’s support.
I know of several instances where this is happening. My friend, Elizabeth, is now on her great-grandchildren! Due to unfortunate circumstances, she pretty much raised her own children by herself. Then, again, life changing events determined that her grandchildren lived with her. She and their daddy worked hard to have happy, healthy children. Now, she is a great-grandmother and much happier reasons are behind her taking care of two babies four days a week. Her granddaughter realized how much her grandma contributed to her life and she wants that for her sons. Elizabeth is a strong, vibrant woman who has so much to offer. Her oldest baby is developing an amazing vocabulary , he is 21 months), the youngest one is 5 months and Elizabeth is teaching so much by example- love, respect and all that she has experienced in her 75 years! Yep, she is 75 and look how she is contributing to her family and society. She will continue with the babies until the family mutually concludes other arrangements need to be put in place.
The next example I can relate to you is my great-great grandnephew, Grant, who is 3 and a half. He spends quite a bit of time with my niece, Becky. She homeschooled her daughters and completely knows the contributions this made in the lives of her daughters. The combined efforts of his mom, his auntie, his MeMe( Becky) and Papa Mark are producing an amazing little boy who is smart as a whip and knows he is loved. He and MeMe are developing “Grants Garden” They live in Arizona where it is possible to be outside most of the time. So, the planning is on for them work on cognitive, social/emotional, speech/language, fine motor and gross motor skills as they happily dig and learn. By the way, there is a lesson plan available for this activity for purchase. Watch this blog for details as to cost and when it will be available.
I am sure we all know examples of grandparents who are making a huge difference in the lives of families all over the country. They are wonderful resource to enrich our children.
If you are involved in the lives of your grandchildren I highly recommend reading the book, The BS Years(Before School), Setting the Stage for School Success. I am the author and it is the result of 30 years of teaching experience and a continuing love of contributing to the education of children. It has information to help you grandparents work with your kids from conception to age five. It will be out early next year. In the meantime, watch for blogs in which you can learn more of how”Grandparents Rule”.