Creating a Family Vision

For the parent(s)

With your parenting partner or alone if you are a single parent, create a vision of your family culture. Do this before you start a family, or at any time later on, just to see if you're on the same page.

Each of you take a piece of paper and write down five statements beginning, "In my family, we . . ." Sample endings might be,"... have a lot of fun"; " . . . drop everything when somebody says 'Come see this wonderful spider web'";"... create an atmosphere where everyone feels safe."

Show each other what you've written and talk it over. Where is there overlap? Are there any disagreements? Can you merge your lists? You probably don't want more than ten statements because too many are too hard to remember. But, in the future, you can look at your lists to ask, "Does what we are doing reflect our family culture?"

When your kids are older, turn this same activity into a family game that will tell you a lot about how you well you are communicating your values.

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