Sept. 8th is National Grandparents Day, and it’s a great time to thank and pay tribute to these senior family members for all they have done. While we shouldn’t need a special day to do this, sometimes it’s helpful to be reminded to show our appreciation or to say, “We love you.”
Grandparents Day was declared a national celebration in 1978 by President Jimmy Carter “to honor grandparents, to give grandparents an opportunity to show love for their children’s children, and to help children become aware of strength, information, and guidance older people can offer.”
Grandparents and grandchildren share a special bond, and they value time spent and memories made together. That shouldn’t change when grandparents move to senior living homes. Grandkids should be assured that visiting Grandma and Grandpa can remain just as enjoyable as ever. In fact, many activities they like to do with each other can continue at the retirement community, and they may discover new ones as well.
Senior living home activities for grandparents and grandkids to enjoy together
The best retirement communities offer many opportunities for on-campus, intergenerational activities. At Country Meadows, we welcome family visitors, including children, and encourage interaction between our residents and their grandkids. Here are a few smile-generating ideas for activities that children can do with Grandma and Grandpa when visiting them:
- Interview grandparents about their lives; take notes and write a story about them
- Explore our campus and its natural beauty; look for birds, butterflies, squirrels and rabbits
- Have a family movie night, complete with popcorn or other snacks
- Bake and decorate cookies or brownies
- Work on a simple craft activity, such as painting or stringing beads
- Play a favorite card game or board game, or assemble a jigsaw puzzle
- Look through your grandparents’ photo album or your digital photos to recall times spent together
- Read books and tell stories to each other
Country Meadows residents and family members can also enjoy using a game room, theater for movies, libraries, computer centers and common areas for entertaining, learning and socializing. Plus, grandkids can enjoy a fun, interactive activity sheet, Explore our Retirement Community, we designed just for them in mind.
Make meaningful moments with seniors receiving memory support
At Country Meadows, we urge children and their families to regularly visit grandparents who are enrolled in our Connections Memory Support Services program. These times together can be comforting for someone who is receiving dementia care services.
To help children understand their grandparent’s experience, we suggest families get our award-winning children’s activity book, “The Unforgettable Adventures of Grandma’s Cape.” Anyone can visit one of our campuses to pick up a copy or ask to have one mailed to you. We can also recommend several children’s books that will explain dementia to kids in language they comprehend.
Even if grandparents have memory loss, discussing their earlier years with them may be possible, depending on their condition. We have more ideas for creating meaningful moments with a loved one with dementia.
Country Meadows welcomes and encourages family interaction—not just on Grandparents Day, but all year long. If you’re thinking of choosing a retirement community, we would like to tell you all about Country Meadows and invite you to see first-hand any of our family-friendly Pennsylvania senior living homes or our Maryland senior community. Please contact us to schedule a visit or to learn more about our caring senior living homes.