In today’s society, grandparents are often separated from their grandchildren by long distances. A senior’s adult children may move away to pursue career opportunities, get married, and begin raising a family far from their childhood home.
Even if grandkids live nearby, school schedules and after-school activities can keep families moving at a frantic pace. It makes spending time with the older generation tough.
But seniors still play a vital role in shaping young lives. From acting as the family’s historian to being a source of unconditional love and support, relationships that cross the generations are important.
Bridging the Intergenerational Gap
New research indicates that when younger generations don’t have enough opportunities to connect with grandparents and other family elders, they are more likely to view aging through a negative lens. They may believe the stereotypes about old age and fear growing older and watching their parents age.
Finding ways to help bridge the generation gap is one way to prevent those fears and concerns from taking root in younger family members. Nontraditional holidays like Halloween provide an ideal opportunity to connect and bond across generations.
Intergenerational Halloween Ideas
What can you do to involve a grandparent in your children’s Halloween plans? Especially if they live far from your family?
We have a few ideas:
- Costume Planning: Involve a grandparent in selecting a Halloween costume. If they can’t be there to shop with you in person, consider using video chat services like Skype or FaceTime to include them. If a grandmother or grandfather has good sewing skills, they might want to help create the costume.
- Trick-or-Treat: If a grandparent can’t tag along while your neighborhood’s trick-or-treat, take the party to them. For example, if a parent lives an assisted living community, take the kids to the Halloween event there. They are typically held on a day other than Halloween to allow families to participate in both.
- Ghost Stories and S’mores: A crisp fall evening can be a great time for a family night of ghost stories and s’mores, even if the celebration has to be shared via Skype. Grandparents can tell their favorite spooky stories, as can the children.
- Halloween Cookie Baking: Baking Halloween cookies is another fun and tasty Halloween event several generations of your family can enjoy together. You can purchase inexpensive cookie cutters in shapes like a witch’s hat, a ghost, a pumpkin, or a bat. Kids can help their grandparent roll out the cookies in fun shapes, then bake and frost them.
Enriching Seniors Lives at Sunrise
Life enrichment is a priority for the entire team at Sunrise Senior Living. We share a commitment to helping each of our residents live every day with purpose. Learn more about our 8 Signature Programs and schedule a visit to a Sunrise community near you!
Source: Sunrise Senior Living