Young children anticipate Christmas with wide eyed wonder, but how do you keep your teens excited over the Holidays? The belief in Santa has long passed, but kids are never too old to experience and share the Holiday Spirit. Teenagers naturally break away from the family and assert their independence. Let them use their self-expression and independent nature to add to this year’s celebration.
Engage in Church Events – As busy as you are at home, the church can always use an extra pair of hands during Christmas. Teens, who enjoy the arts or have good organization skills, can help with one of the Church productions. Whether it is helping organize the Christmas potluck, assisting with the kids’ choir concert, or helping making costumes for the nativity play teens can use their talents to engage.
Donate clothes – Teens are still finding out who they are. As a result, they try on different styles and looks while they figure out how to accurately express themselves. One of the most popular gifts for teens is apparel or money they usually use on to enhance their wardrobe. They can use this opportunity to go through their closet and pull out whatever they no longer want or need. Let them pack everything up and donate the rest to charity.
Volunteer – Teenagers have the habit of being self-absorbed, even during the Holidays. Volunteering will help teens take the focus off of themselves and contemplate a greater purpose. There are many charities to choose from. They can work at a soup kitchen, volunteer with a kids group or help at an animal shelter. Making a difference will increase their self-esteem and make them much more positive and thankful.
Put Them in Charge – Include your teens by showing them you appreciate their taste and trust their judgment. Make them completely responsible for a special Christmas project. Let them put together all the Christmas music to play during the festivities or plan the games for the Christmas Eve party. Put them in charge of designing this year’s Christmas card. Whatever you chose they will play an integral role in the celebration.
Help Younger Siblings – Teenagers may not experience the same excitement for Christmas activities that they did when they were younger, but they can enjoy them in a new way. Plan for them to take their younger siblings to the mall and shop for the parent gifts. Teens can also help them make personalized Christmas ornaments or help bake the cookies while the younger ones decorate. This way they can take a lead role in the activities.
Share Story time- Christmas is a time for caring and sharing. Pour two mugs of hot chocolate and have meaningful conversation with your teen. Tell them about a personal childhood Christmas story you never told your teen. Start the conversation then sit back and listen. Ask them about the first Christmas they remember, what they plan to do with their friends during Christmas vacation, and what traditions they would like to continue when they have their own families. It is a great way to build a family bond, share traditions and cultivate the Christmas spirit.