This is the fourth post in my series “Minimalism in an RV”. The other posts can be found here. This post is going to focus on ways to give your children private time and spaces away from the rest of the family.
Privacy is a hot commodity in the RV community since we live in such close quarters. Not only should adults and couples make time to be alone, but children also benefit from quality alone time. Even if your children are beyond nap time, it is good to give them quiet time to relax, reflect, and do things alone.
How can we give each child alone time when they share bunks, beds, or even pull out couches in already tiny homes? Here are some tips to help create these spaces and allotted times for your children.
- Make older kids have quiet time when babies and toddlers nap. This doesn’t mean they have to lay in their beds and just look at books though. They can write, do puzzles, do a craft, play with Legos or many other activities that are hard to do with toddlers around grabbing things that big brothers or sisters have.
- Put curtains around sleeping areas to create a private space. We don’t have curtains up but we do have a blanket up so the toddler has privacy in the bottom bunk. Also, our oldest can have alone time whenever he wants by getting into his bed on the top bunk-the toddler is too short to climb up. The blanket idea came from our 8 year old that wanted to “make a tent”.
- Let your older children stay up sometimes to talk with Mom and Dad alone. Not only is it good to get alone time but it is also good to have private conversations with Mom and Dad about once a week. We started doing this when our oldest was showing some jealousy issues. We were able to talk through his thoughts and explain proper ways to handle the situations without the toddler demanding to have our attention.
- Give younger children attention when older kids are doing independent homeschooling work or chores. When older children are busy working on school projects or chores they know how to do, take time with the little ones. Teach them to pick up toys, throw away trash, and put shoes away. Tickle, dance, and just have a blast with them!
- Teach your children to respect each other’s need for privacy. Ultimately it comes down to parents teaching their children to respect each other’s needs and learn to give space and time alone when needed. It might take time but don’t lose faith. Teaching proper communication and cooperation is key to families thriving in RVs.
- Lastly, teach your children to respect their parents privacy. When the hard days come and the kids are screaming and fighting or the adults just need some alone time, teach your kids to play alone or together quietly. Movie time for the kids can be a sanity-saver for the parents!
Enjoy these tips! Do you have any you would like to share?