Children and the elderly don’t seem like they would be the best of friends, but research suggests that encouraging intergenerational hang outs can provide many benefits for young and old.
With vastly different energy levels and interests, and oldest and youngest among us seem as though they wouldn’t have much fun, but an Australian study says otherwise. Playtime between children and the elderly delivers benefits for the health and wellbeing at both ends of the age spectrum.
Reap the rewards for young and old
Time spent with young people benefits the elderly by:
- Enhancing mood
- Encouraging physical activity
- Improving enjoyment of life
- Reducing symptoms of dementia
- Providing opportunities to learn new things
From the perspective of children, this intergenerational hang out time benefitted them with:
- An insight into getting older and what it really means
- A patient ear to talk to
- Many new educational opportunities
- An appreciation of a diverse community
This video provides further insight into the benefits of children spending time in a residential care home for the elderly:
How those in your care can benefit
Aged care workers and child care workers can collaborate within local communities to create opportunities for the old and young to spend enjoyable time together.
Christmas is a great time to start — organise for a child care centre or kinder class to sing Christmas carols at a local aged care facility to begin with.
These ten classic Christmas songs will appeal to all aged groups and enable everyone to sing along.
Creating relationships within the community benefits all involved, and the relationship between young and old is sure to bring many happy smiles.
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