Children with highly involved parents exhibit higher self esteem, greater academic performance, fewer behavioral issues, and generally more success than children with very busy or absent parents. For this reason, taking time each day to play, talk, and spend time with your kids is critically important to their development. But, planning activities that are fun for the whole family can be difficult. Here are five children's entertainment tips to keeping everyone satisfied!

1. Take Turns Choosing the Activity

One of the best ways to get your kids invested and engaged in the family activity is to put the choice of what to do in their hands. It has been proven in classrooms that when children are allowed to choose the activity, they feel greater autonomy and thus, show much higher levels of participation than if they had no influence over the nature of the activity. To keep things budget-friendly, consider picking 4 or 5 options ahead of time and allowing your child to choose from those pre approved activities. This way your kid can feel like they chose the activity, but you do not have to turn down any of their wild and fanciful ideas.

2. Bring Entertainment and Games for the Trip

If your activity involves some travel, for instance if you are taking a trip to a state or national park, or a renaissance fair, you can cut down on your stress during the commute by planning entertainment for the trip. Whether you bring books, and iPad, or a portable DVD player with a few of their favorite movies, planning your children's entertainment for the route will help avoid you avoid hearing "are we there yet?" every two minutes until you arrive at your destination.

3. Keep Them Fed

As you know, kids get hungry. But, by planning some food options in advance of your activity, you can avoid any issues involving rumbling tummies. One way to tackle this situation is to plan your meals into the activity. For instance, there are many family friendly dinner theater restaurants offering a full meal and drinks along with exciting entertainment that will keep your kids fascinated for days.

4. Allow Them to Bring Friends

If your kids are still reluctant to participate in any of your family fun activities and outings, tell them they can bring a friend and watch them light up. As children get into the preteen and teen years, their friends replace their family in terms of social importance. Rather than bemoan the loss of your loving little baby, take advantage of this opportunity to get to know your kids friends and still spend quality time with the whole family.

5. Keep Them Learning

Although kids love a trip to the mall or the flashing lights and ringing sounds of the arcade, memories of these trips will fade quickly. However, indulging in your kids interests and taking them on a truly novel experience will build memories that last and enforce the value of lifelong learning in your family.
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