The Top 10 Things Children Actually Want From Their Parents

The Top 10 Things Children Actually Want From Their Parents

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Ever wondered what your children actually want from you? Get some awesome parenting advice and tips straight from kids like yours. Discover what they will remember; what makes a difference and what they truly desire.

My three year old climbed into my lap for some snuggle time. I relaxed into the cuddle to relish the moment of quiet. At that moment I I felt a warm rush of deep love infuse my being. There is nothing quite like those moments of deep connection is there?

Two seconds later the cold whispers of doubt and fear crept in. This child was so precious and special. He was growing up so fast and I knew that his childhood would fly past. What if I messed up this parenting thing?

How could I possibly know what he really wanted and needed? What if I got it wrong?

We parents long to do the things that matter to our children in the few years we are given. We want to do the things that will stick with them, shape them, and cause them to look back on their childhood with happiness.


So how can we do that? What things will our children remember? What will make the difference? Where is the instruction manual?

Related: 15 Incredibly Powerful Ways To Show Love To Our Children

A treasure trove of tips and advice straight from children

When I happened on a list of what kids love their parents to do, I felt as if I discovered a gold mine.

Every Mother’s Day for 16 years a teacher named Erin Kurt asked her students to give her advice on being a parent. They were to name those things their parents did with them, which made them feel happy or loved.

Erin noticed over the years that many of these responses were the same, so she created a list that revealed, “ The Top Ten Things Children Really Want Their Parents to Do With Them.

A list of tips and advice straight from children like ours? YES PLEASE!

Are you ready to get the inside scoop? Prepare to be encouraged. Prepare to be affirmed Prepare to find hope.

The Top Ten Things Children Actually Want Their Parents To Do

  1. Come into my bedroom at night, tuck me in and sing me a song. Also tell me stories about when you were little.
  2. Give me hugs and kisses and sit and talk with me privately.
  3. Spend quality time just with me, not with my brothers and sisters around.
  4. Give me nutritious food so I can grow up healthy.
  5. At dinner talk about what we could do together on the weekend.
  6. At night talk to me about anything; love, school, family etc.
  7. Let me play outside a lot.
  8. Cuddle under a blanket and watch our favorite TV show together.
  9. Discipline me. It makes me feel like you care.
  10. Leave special messages in my desk or lunch bag.

It’s that simple!

I don’t know about you, but this list put a big smile on my face.  The things our children long for; the things that make them feel loved are not hard or expensive.

They are simple, easy, and really doable. Whoo hoo!

It is the small things that parents do that mean the most and are remembered

So this year maybe we can get things right after all. Maybe you have just discovered that you have been doing things right all along! Let’s celebrate the birth of a new year and commit to doing those small things that mean the world to our children.

Now it’s your turn

What would you add to this list? Ask your children – What things help you feel happy and loved? Then do those things as often as you can.

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28 thoughts on “The Top 10 Things Children Actually Want From Their Parents”

  1. Hi, I’m visiting from the Family Friday link up. 🙂 Beautiful post. Thank you for reminding me of what ia truly important to my children. One of my goals this year is to have a one on one date with my son every month, doing things he wants to do, not what I think he wants to do. I will keep your post in mind.

    1. Thanks for visiting Rebekah. I love the idea of your one on one dates with your son. It will be wonderful (and interesting) to find out what he wants to do.

  2. Bonnie a.k.a. LadyBlogger

    Thanks so much for this! A perfect FREE list of things that kiddos want and can never get enough of!

  3. Actually Mummy...

    That’s a lovely list, and you’re right it is completely doable – it just takes being there with them. I’ll pin you to my parenting tips board having found you on today’s pin-it party

    1. Thanks for the pin 🙂 You are right it just takes being there with them. So glad you dropped by for a visit.

    1. I’m glad you were encouraged by this list. It’s good to know that we do a lot of things right 🙂

  4. Lovely post, makes me think, I am doing some things right.
    Thanks for linking #LetKidsBeKids

  5. This is a really lovely post. Such simple things, how easy it is to make up children happy – but how difficult it sometimes is to remember to make these simple moments happen. #LetKidsBeKids

    1. Oh I hear you Sara…sometimes we get so wrapped up in the business of life. It is good to know that it only takes a few simple things to get back on track.

  6. What a lovely post Sharon – I’m visiting via the #IBOT link-up and discovering you for the first time. I love this list and your sentiments because it is about what we can DO rather than what we shouldn’t DO. I just wrote a post about trying to stop yelling (or cultivate calm) but just as important is the things we can do that are right. I love the song at night tradition with my kids – although at one stage it built up to 4-5 songs with my daughter! She’s now 10 and I have to say I’ve let the night traditions slip – will rekindle.

    1. Thanks for visiting Kathy. I think sometimes we just need to stop and see all the little things we can and are doing. I found it encouraging to realize that I did a lot of things right 🙂 I’m glad you are going to rekindle the night tradition. Your daughter is coming to an age when she will encounter many new things. She may need to talk about them and having some one on one time is really helpful.

  7. What a wonderful parenting to-do list! Thank you for the reminder, and thank you for linking up with the Hearts for Home blog hop.

  8. This is a wonderful list. I love the simplicity of what children really want. Thanks for the reminder to revel in the mess.

    Thank you for stopping by the Thoughtful Spot Weekly Blog Hop this week. We hope to see you drop by our neck of the woods next week!

  9. A wonderful reminder of taking the time to enjoy and to listen to our children. Thanks for sharing at After School!

  10. Pingback: Let kids be kids linky

  11. Great post! I’m very relieved to discover that my hubby & I do all these things anyway. Not everyday of course, although it would be great to be able to

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