Engaging with Your Grandchildren

kids sitting on a senior's lap

When a grandparent lives in a central Ohio assisted living community, it might be challenging to find engaging ways for your children to stay connected with them. Finding meaningful activities they can enjoy together is important for both age groups. Creating bonds with their elders helps kids develop healthy attitudes about aging. Spending time with children and teens also helps seniors’ mental and emotional well-being.

This list may give you a few ideas for the older and younger generations of your families to spend more time together:

Make Friends with the Birds

Set up a bird feeder that your child can fill for their grandparent. They can use it to identify and learn more about the feathered friends that visit. The two age groups might also be interested in helping track their visitors on behalf of an organization called Nature Abounds. Through their Watch the Wild program, volunteers observe wildlife in their area and submit what they see online.

Reading Buddies

Stock up on books that both generations can enjoy reading together. Every time your children visit, they can read a few pages together with their grandparent. This list provides age-appropriate book suggestions to help you with your choices.

Craft and Hobby Kits

Local craft stores have a variety of kits you can buy ranging from making bird houses to mosaic stones. You can purchase a few of these to keep for your loved ones to use to work on projects together. Several of the larger craft stores–such as Michaels Crafts and Hobby Lobby–have online coupons you can use to make these projects more affordable.

Game Baskets

Assemble a basket of cards, games and puzzles the two can enjoy together on visits. If your senior loved one lives with a vision impairment, you can also find large print cards and games at several stores online.

Movie Marathon

A movie marathon might be just the ticket for enjoying a winter afternoon. Grandparents.com has reviews that can help you select a few videos appropriate for both generations.


Another project your loved ones can work on over the months and years is a family scrapbook. Cell phone cameras make it easy to take and print photos to include in the scrapbook. If your children are older, they might enjoy creating family videos with a grandparent even more. Both can be treasured keepsakes for your family to have for years to come.

For more inexpensive activities for grandparents and grandchildren to enjoy together, visit Activities, Games and Crafts.