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Mastering the Magic of Play: A Workshop for Parents

Spend a day learning a special method of play which has a 40 year history of success helping parents and children improve their relationship and reducing problem behaviors in children.  This method is called Filial Family Therapy.  It is especially helpful for children ages 3-10.

Cost is $35/couple  During the day you will learn strategies for listening to children, following their lead, setting limits, structuring play sessions, and creating role plays.

For more information or to register, contact IDEALS at 502-227-0055.

Why Family Meals?

There was a time when the cardinal rule for kids was: be home for dinner.  No more.  Children don’t just go out to play with somebody somewhere on the street.  They have activities scattered here, there, and everywhere, often scheduled at times when families used to eat dinner and requiring an adult to drive them.  Dinner is grabbed at a drive-thru before or after practice or scouts.

It is the modern way.  Maybe it is a way that needs challenging.  Much good can happen at the family dinner table:  The highs and lows of each person’s day can be celebrated, problem solved, or mourned.  You can share jokes (even those funny to an eight year old) and news.  You can pray to remember God with thankfulness before you eat.  Shared food makes for shared feelings and lives.

There are some things NOT to do at dinner. Discipline anybody for what happened earlier in the day; argue; text, talk on the phone, or otherwise say “other people are more important than my family”; become the Inquisition; fight over what is not being eaten; lecture; tease beyond happy banter.

INSTEAD, let everyone tell the best or worst moment of the day; talk about the news or a topic of interest; plan family fun; tell or retell family stories; express caring for each other, extended family, and friends.  Make up a communal story (one person starts, then another adds, etc).  Have fun!

Try turning off the TV and parking the cell phone in another room.  Have meals that people enjoy.  Sit around the table together.  If you almost never have a family dinner, start by doing it once or twice a week.  If you do it that often, add a day or add something to make it special—breakfast for dinner, make your own sundaies, each week somebody gets to pick the menu.  If someone does some of those “not do’s” at dinner, find a way to keep on having family, to keep on having fun.  It builds memories, communication skills, and bonds.

-Mary Ortwein, Founder and Director