Family Day – September 24, 2007

September 24, 2007 at 10:38 am (Uncategorized)

From the Family Day Website….
Did you know that eating dinner frequently with your children and teens reduces their risk of substance abuse?

Research by The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA)* at Columbia University consistently finds that the more often children eat dinner with their families, the less likely they are to smoke, drink or use drugs. 

CASA created Family DayA Day to Eat Dinner with Your Children in 2001, as a national movement that encourages parents to frequently eat dinner with their kids and be involved in their children’s lives as simple, effective ways to reduce substance abuse among children and teens. Family Day is celebrated on the fourth Monday in September.


I sure wish that CASA would have talked to my parents before they spent money doing research on this!  You see they raised my sister and I back in the 60’s and 70’s and they knew the importance of the family meal long before any research was done on it!  As a matter of fact, not only did we eat dinner together we also didn’t watch T.V. while eating dinner!  Amazing!  (Thanks Mom!)

Years later I find it very sad that our society needs a special day to tell us to eat dinner together as a family!  As homeschoolers I expect most of us are eating approximately 3 meals a day with our kids!  I found it interesting when I ran across this website because I was actually just thinking about this the other day.  I heard a story about a girl who is currently a teenager & deeply involved in drugs.  She had started doing drugs when she was 11!  My 1st thought was HOW?  You see I spend time mostly with homeschoolers and I don’t know any that at the age of 11 (or 12, or 13, or 14, etc.) who would have the opportunity to do drugs!  It is hard to get stoned when you are with your parents 24/7!  But it is more than that.  When you are homeschooling the main influence in your life is your family.  You hang out with your siblings, your parents, your grandparents, etc.   So my point is maybe we homeschooler are on to something?  Maybe spending unlimited time with our kids is beneficial to more than their education?  Maybe it teaches them how to live?  Here is some other info I found on the Family Day Website:

Regular family dinners aren’t the only way to help keep your kids substance free. Here are some other important things you can do: 

  • Set a good example.
  • Know your child’s whereabouts, activities and friends. 
  • Set fair rules and hold your child to them.
  • Maintain open lines of communication.
  • Surround your child with positive role models.
  • Learn the signs and symptoms of teen substance abuse and conditions that increase risk.

Sounds to me like we as homeschooler are on the right track!  (Although I will admit I don’t know much about the last one in the list.)

With all that said…I did see this awesome boxes of cards over at the CASA website. They are loaded with questions to ask each other the dinner table!  When I was pregnant with my 3rd child my oldest son had an opportunity to go to Hannukah at our Midwives house. She had a box like this they used over dinner.  I never knew where she got them, until now!  HERE is the link.  (Of course you know me I am already thinking about what questions I could type up so we could make our own version of these cards!)

Bon Appetit!! 


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