Family Time Is Precious Time – Jennifer Oaten

Up and Down the River is a card game well known to my children. A pack of cards go with us every time we go on holiday. When we talk about family holidays we have been on, we often talk about where and when we played Up and Down the River. On a boat, plane, train or more recently down south. It connects us, enables us to have fun together and brings out our competitive spirit. It is a ritual for us and one of the ways we like to spend family time.

Benefits of family time

Family Time:

  • Is important for the emotional and social development of young people. Work, homework, and after school activities all compete for family time, but it is important to build family bonds as they can help you through the tough times.  I believe that it’s a parents’ goal to raise happy and well-adjusted children, and family time can play a role in this.
  • Is paramount in building strong relationships. It enables young people to feel loved and reassured, and also it demonstrates positive relationships. The undivided attention of parents and the affection shown help relationships thrive. Disconnecting from technology promotes honest interactions and builds social confidence and relationship skills that extend well beyond the family unit.
  • Can be an escape from the demands of our daily lives. Interactions can help build self-esteem in young people who lack the confidence to contribute to conversations in other social situations.  It is also thought that spending time with family helps develop values and priorities, which are guiding lights in our lives.
  • Provides an opportunity to feel valued and heard. It also leads to improved overall mental health. Spending time with family promotes adaptability and resilience and ensures young people know that they matter and are valued.


"Time is the most precious commodity we can have because, unlike money, we can't make more of it."

The Christmas holidays provide us with time to be with our family. It is the perfect opportunity to make some lifelong memories together. Whether playing a card game, attending an event or going on a holiday, these positive memories are precious possessions. I can’t wait to make some memories during these holidays with my family, and I look forward to hearing from our students in 2022 about some of the memories they made.

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