Have you ever found yourself watching your children play at the park and hoping other children will play with them?
Why not be that family that engages the other children and parents first?
Three years ago, visiting the park became meaningful. Not just for me, but this opportunity is available to all of you. Whether you are a park bench warmer, just moved into a new neighborhood or like me, a home school mom.
How We Began
My 3 children (ages 3,5,and 7 at the time) thought we were coming to the park as usual. It was a bit rougher with my own children than I anticipated.
When our balls and games came out to share, my children were not too keen on the idea. In addition to teaching my children that we will share with others, sharing their mom (me) was the bigger challenge. My dear child devised a plan to thwart my efforts. He grabbed the ball, blocked me from the other children and told me to play with him.
After this day, I was convinced the park plan was perfect for us. My children needed to learn how to share and play with the younger children.
We home school our children. Going to the park is part of our home school week. I lead our home school group, but for many weeks I was alone. Even after I started building relationships with other moms, it took time for other moms to come alongside of me.
Three years later, we have some amazing friends. When we are at the park, it seems as if we are in all one big group. One of the best compliments I’ve heard is “I can’t tell who is a part of the home school group and who is from the park.”
If you are wondering how you or your children can connect, then take the initiative.
Our Park Plan
The park plan involves moms who are willing to engage with other children and their moms. The question is Do You Care About Others? Read the article and see if this might be something that is already in your heart or an area to grow in.
If your goal is to build ongoing relationships with the families, then decide a consistent time that you will be coming to the park weekly. This is a critical part of the plan. One of the first moms I met was new to our town and skeptical that we would consistently come. But after a while she realized we were consistent and still comes every week and has become a great friend. We were able to help provide meals after a recent child birth, which was a blessing to be that involved in her family.
As new families arrived, I introduced myself to the parents. I also explained that we would be playing games and having snacks. Parents needed to know who we were . I offered the mom the option of giving her cell number to me to send a text message. I sent text messages each week to let each person know we would be there or if for some reason we wouldn’t be coming.
Usually we take a break in the hot summer months or bad weather.
Our park plan may be the key for you, your family, your friends, or your home school group to make a difference.
Click Here to read about simple ways to begin to a similar outreach near you.