It’s hard to believe I am the grandmother of a future middle school student! The time has gone so fast. Sharing our family traditions and building on the legacy established with my kids is a blessing I cherish. One of the traditions I am carrying on with my grandkids is to plan rites of passage experiences for every significant transition—elementary to middle school, middle school to high school, and high school to college. Planning rites of passage encourage intentionality for the next milestone your teens are about to experience. You can share your values, hopes, and dreams with them. They appreciate practical strategies to use for their new chapter. We always make it fun. My daughter and I started this tradition by planning spa visits—nothing says love like a pedicure! These traditions can be as simple as scheduling a hike or visiting a new place you have always wanted to see. You don’t have to spend much money to make these rites of passage experiences memorable. I recently enjoyed planning my granddaughter’s special weekend with three generations! I purchased a small journal and gave my granddaughter some journal entries to start thinking about critical protective strategies to prepare her for what is ahead. Then you use the journal topics as conversation starters. The expectation for the weekend is that we no longer see you as a child; you are now a young adult and have greater freedom and responsibilities. Some strategies include celebrating faith and family traditions, building a legacy of memories, and taking advantage of teachable moments.
Journal Entry Conversation Openers
- It takes courage to….
- Being grateful…
- My life verse…
- My identity is…
- Inside outside—outside in–Knowing emotions sometimes can’t be trusted
- Being goal focused
- Friends change
- A good friend is….
- When I have to make a decision, I will….
- My heroes are….
- My plans for middle school adventures are….
I love calling my granddaughter to talk about these crucial areas of her life. What a treasure it is to have this positive legacy with her. Nothing says love like a pedicure!