33 Ideas For Quality One-On-One Time With Your Child

by Jan 4, 2019Focused Friday, Mom Life, Parenting22 comments

This post contains affiliate links. For more information, see my disclosures here.


Do you want to make sure you spend enough one-on-one time with your children? Do you feel like you don’t make family time a priority in your normal routine? It is common for any busy mom and dad to overlook the amount of quality one-on-one time your children get from you throughout the day. Life as parents is hectic. In today’s post, I will give you a very user friendly printable that will guarantee that your children will get the quality one-on-one time they deserve.


I definitely have had trouble over the past few years making sure all of my kids get good quality mommy time. With 4 little kids running around who need my constant help and attention, it’s extremely difficult to give them my undivided attention.


When all 4 kids are calling your name, some are even crying and asking for help, and I just can’t get to each one of them at the same time. Someone has to wait, and someone has to be last. I do feel bad for them, but I know it will build their character in many ways. Even though living in a home of 6 people is character building, these kids deserve to be given the attention kids so desperately want.


Related: 5 Tips On How To Avoid Burnout


That is why I like to schedule one-on-one time with my children!

Schedule One-On-One Time With Your Kids

It is so easy to forget about blocking off time in the middle of your crazy schedule, to stop everything you are doing and say to your kid, “Hey, buddy, let’s have some one-on-one time right now”. I think it’s more practical to actually schedule out a special DATE with your kids instead of it being spontaneous.


Related: 7 Tips To Find Balance Between Work And Family


This will help guarantee you won’t miss a date. And trust me, you don’t want to miss a date. Quality time is so important for your children’s development. I have listed 7 benefits to spending quality time with your kids:

 7 Benefits to Quality One-On-One Time with Your Children


1. Your child will ultimately feel loved.

Just knowing that his parent wants to spend time with him is an act of love. Every kid wants to feel loved by their parents, and you taking him out on a date lets him know that you are thinking about him and choosing him to spend your time with today. It shows that you care about him and you love him.


2. Build self-esteem for the child who is singled out on the date.

When the other siblings are not over-dominating the one child during the date, that child has an opportunity to shine and let loose. That child has free will to act and say whatever he wants without the other siblings getting in the way. This in turn helps the child to develop self-confidence in his own decisions and actions when he’s alone with you as the parent that encourages good behavior on the date.


3. Uninterrupted conversation where you can really listen to your child and your child will feel like he is being listened to.

This opens up the doors to amazing conversation, where your child can feel comfortable talking to you about anything. The date is a way for your child to know the environment is safe, relaxing, fun and the perfect time to talk to Mommy or Daddy about anything, without interruptions and without judgement.


4. Your child’s attention is focused on you and gives you a great opportunity to express your needs as a parent and your expectations you have for your child.

If you have been nagging your kids over and over again about house rules and what you expect of them as your children in the house, maybe this is a good time to gently and kindly express your desires of your kids’ behavior. Don’t overdo it and ruin the date by hammering the rules into your kid’s head. But instead kindly remind your child about some of the behaviors you would like him to improve on. Do this in the car ride, make it brief and don’t let it interfere with the joy of the date. But this is a great time to get your child’s full attention on some really important topics.


5. Great time to talk about age appropriate topics when you are alone with your child.

Speaking of great conversations, open up the door to talk to your kid about “age appropriate conversations” that you typically cannot talk about while other siblings are around. Your child will feel more comfortable talking to you in private while on the date. Again, the car ride is perfect for that. Turn off the music and instead open up deep conversations with your kid.


6. “Attention-Seeking” behavior can be reduced when the child feels like he is getting the attention he has always wanted.

If your child typically acts out in a way that seems like he just wants more attention, well, then it’s probably true. He wants more of your attention but just isn’t getting it. With these dates, his desires to have more attention from his parents can be fulfilled with these one-on-one dates, and he won’t feel the need to act out in the way he once used to.


7. The relationship between you and your child will inevitably be strengthened.

You and your child’s bond can only get better the more time you spend with your child. You, as the parent, will get to know your child’s strengths and weakness, understand his thoughts, his behavior and his choices more clearly. Your child will learn to understand what you are like as a person and start to model your behavior as well. It’s a win-win.

Make A DATE With Your Kids


Now that you understand the importance of quality time with your children and how much of an impact it has on your little one, let’s be honest. It’s hard to find time to be one-on-one with your kids. That’s why scheduling a date will help you to remember to make the time your kids deserve.  


5 benefits of making a DATE for your one-on-one time:

1. It’s organized and less likely to be skipped over when your date is scheduled in the calendar

2. It is less likely that another scheduled event will overlap or postpone the scheduled one-on-one date

3. You and your kids can get excited about it in advance, talking about it for days leading up to the fun date

4.  You will have the opportunity to plan something more elaborate with your child that doesn’t involve staying in the house

5. It’s easier to communicate with the rest of the family so the other family members don’t feel left out (they won’t have to ask when it is their turn because they will be able to see their date scheduled on the calendar). This also helps your spouse know when you need him to be available to watch the other kids while you are out on your special one-on-one kid’s date.

    Powered By ConvertKit

    Get Your FREE Date Planner Printable

    I made this easy printable to help you organize how you will schedule your kids’ dates. It’s different for each family depending on how many children you have.

    Obviously it’s easy to schedule dates with your child if you only have one child. I just recommend you and your spouse communicate about your schedules and how many times each of you want to spend one-on-one time together.

    If you have 2 or more children, I recommend printing off the corresponding printable to hang on your refrigerator or command center. Click on the image to download the FREE printable.

    The first printable is an example of what my family does with 4 children. You will find different printables depending on how many children you have in your household. I also included a blank one for you to fill out if you have more than 4 kids. 



    Example-Family with 4 Kids
    2 Kid Household
    3 Kid Household
    4 Kid Household
    Blank Planner


    When filling out the planner, remember to alternate children between Mommy and Daddy dates. Write the exact calendar date in each corresponding box with the child’s name. 


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    Quality Family Time Date Ideas and Activities


    If you are looking for some great date ideas for your one-on-one time with your kids, here are a few of our favorites activities:


    33 Date Ideas With Kids


    1. Library
    2. Bike ride
    3. Walk/run together
    4. Sports together
    5. Fishing
    6. Boating and kayaking
    7. Dining out together
    8. Ice cream date
    9. Community Pool
    10. Movie date
    11. Painting date
    12. Pottery date
    13. Shopping
    14. Church missions functions
    15. Other acts of service within the community
    16. Walk the dog
    17. Nature walk +photography
    18. Ice skating
    19. Mini golf
    20. See a play/musical/concert
    21. Playground
    22. Have a Picnic
    23. Camping
    24. Visit a local Nursery/Garden center
    25. Learn a new skill together
    26. Lowes and Home Depot classes for Kids
    27. Sign up for a Michael’s craft lesson together
    28. Amusement Park and/or Water Park
    29. Zoo
    30. Children’s Museum or Science Museums
    31. Go to the pet store
    32. Visit a local Humane Society
    33. Google in your area “Top 10 Free Things To Do With Kids”

    I hope you have gained some insight on the importance of the quality one-on-one time you spend with your child. Do you and your children have a favorite date that you all enjoy doing together that’s not on my list? I would love to hear about your ideas, and I know other moms would also enjoy hearing about it, too, so please, comment below. And if you have any questions, feel free to write me below. 

    If you are looking for a fun outdoor adventure date, I know you would really enjoy this post HERE!

    Did you know that quality one-on-one time is one of the 5 Love Languages? If you want to learn more about The 5 Love Languages, including Physical TouchReceiving Gifts, Acts of Service, Quality Time and Words of Affirmation, you would enjoy reading my tips and ideas in the other posts mentioned below.

    Keep Smiling,

    Dr. Jena Bradley, DPT

    This post contains affiliate links. For more information, see my disclosures here.

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    1. Lisa

      I love this! Quality time with each of our kids is so important, and you shared many of the reasons why. I love your list of ideas – we will be trying a few of them. Great post!

      • Jena Bradley

        Lisa, I’m so glad you liked it! Have fun spending time with your kids!

    2. Kimmy Ripley

      My daughter Chloe is 9 and these are all really excellent ideas! My favorite is the make-a-date one! Me and her could really use some mommy/daughter time somewhere… just the two of us. I’m thinking SHOPPING!!

      • Jena Bradley

        Kimmy, Shopping! Good pick. I bet your daughter, Chloe, has a great sense of style!

    3. Andrea Charles

      I love your list of 33 things. We do a lot of these. Our favorites are going to the park, swimming, and going for a walk.

      • Jena Bradley

        Andrea, I’m really glad you enjoyed the list. It’s so good to hear other moms are being creative with their kids and having fun outdoors!

    4. Anne-onedeterminedlife

      My kids love language is quality time and so I always try to have some time with them on a daily basis. This is not easily done, but even 2 minutes of undivided attention can go a long way.

      • Jena Bradley

        Anne, I know all about “quality time” love language. It’s mine too. That’s great you recognize your child’s love language.

    5. colleen

      This is a great reminder of ways to spend quality time with each child. I have found this very helpful since one of my children takes a lot of time and worry about my other child being left out. Thank you.

      • Jena Bradley

        Colleen, I’m glad this was helpful for you! Enjoy the special time you have with your kids.

    6. Jennifer Love

      Wow – this is so many ideas and resources in one post! Love that the ideas for dates are around town, some free, and practical. We CAN have fun with our kids on simple but thoughtful dates. Love this focus.
      And sharing on our family idea page. 🙂

      • Jena Bradley

        Jennifer, I am so glad you liked it that much! I think it’s so important and I hope this helps many moms and dads to see the value in quality time with their little ones before they grow up and move out. Enjoy the time we have with them when we have it!

    7. Bailey

      I love your suggestions! This is really helpful as I was just trying to think of things to do one-on-one with my nieces and nephews. Really trying to bulid up those relationships!

      • Jena Bradley

        Bailey, glad you loved the ideas. I can’t wait to hear what you decided to do with your nieces and nephews. You will learn so much more about them and their personalities when it’s just the two of you! Have fun!

    8. Cayla


      This post gave me ALL the feels. As moms, we have such a significant role and spending one-on-one time with our kids is crucial. I love your ideas. Reading books with my baby girl has always been one of my greatest parts of the day!

      • Jena Bradley

        Cayla, I’m so glad you liked it and that you understand the importance of quality one-on-one time. Your daughter will grow up to cherish the memories of story time with you. 🙂

    9. Kayla

      This is so important. I have 4 kiddos and I try to give them quality time just them and me. My 5 year old and I love going on mommy and me dates.

      • Jena Bradley

        Kayla, I have 4 kids also! I find that quality one-on-one time is so different for each kid at each age group, but all so fun! Glad you are having fun, too!

    10. Jessica

      Spending more quality time with my kids is top of my priority list this year. It is so easy to be with them, but not really be with them. I especially have been trying to focus more on having uninterrupted conversations with them. It is so hard with three kids! One of them is always trying to talk over the other. Teaching them to be patient and wait their turn is something we have been working on a lot lately!

      • Jena Bradley

        Jessica, that is something I’m working on now with my 4 kids, not interrupting one another. That’s why I love one-on-one time so much, it’s uninterrupted time!

    11. Jalisa Harris

      I’m always looking for great ways to spend more time with my five year old. Thank you for this

      • Jena Bradley

        Jalisa, you’re welcome. I’m glad you liked it.


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