Why have a grandparents program?
A number of years ago I was visiting my daughter Ellen and her family, and I volunteered to pick up her younger daughter, Kathryn (who we mostly call “Katie”), then 13, at the end of her school day.
“So how was school?” I asked her, by rote.
This time, Katie refused to give me a rote answer. She deposited her backpack on the ground and resolutely folded her arms. “Grandpa,” she said sharply, “I’m more than just a student, you know!”
Of course I knew! But did I, really?
Standard queries, preachy advice, the obligatory check-in-the-mail for birthdays and holidays – these weren’t the tickets for admission to Katie’s world, or to any other youngster’s world, for that matter. She had a rich, deepening life of the mind, full of dreams and convictions, doubts and fears – and now she was inviting me in to share it, through a small window that might soon close.
Unleash Your Creativity and Create a Culture of Teaching and Learning
I invite you to unleash your creativity, to focus your skills and passion to bring your family closer across the generations. And I am here to help. I have set up successful grandparenting programs at public and private schools in Deerfield and across Chicagoland, as well as at religious education programs in LA, New York and Chicago.
Now, I am capturing it all in a “Do-It-Yourkself” kit, a step-by-step guide where I am sharing my experience, lessons learned, tips and tools and letters from schools to guide you.
This Grandparents Connection School Kit breaks everything into easy to follow instructions from logistics to getting buy-in from school administrators and from your family as well. It will give grandparents the tools to enter your grandchild’s world, and schools an opportunity to connect with grandparents who are also community voters on bond issues, and often investors in their grandchild’s education.
What’s next? I need help on printing and distribution, to reach grandparents and schools across the country. The kit is a powerful tool in building intergenerational bonds to strengthen community.
Late Boomers and Early Z’ers are young, active, and increasingly a grandparent. In fact, in 2014, one out of every four Americans is a grandparent…more people than all of France. The average age a person becomes a grandparent in the US today is 50. Grandparents control approximately 75% of the personal wealth in the United States, and will spend $63.5B on grandchildren this year.