If you have kids, you may be anticipating the long break for the winter holidays—or, as some parents tell us when they stop by our diner in Lincoln Park, you may be dreading it! No matter how you view this time off, your kids are likely to be around a lot… and in search of things to do! Instead of leaving them to melt their brains with screens all day, try these fun activities that promote social skill development.

Volunteer. Volunteering makes people happy and makes the world a better place. This holiday season, look for places for you and your kids to give back to the community! This can be anything from making crafts to serving in soup kitchens to shoveling snow—community centers and religious organizations often have great resources.

Expand cultural awareness. Help your kids see the greater world around them by taking them to different cultural events. This includes museum trips, artwork exhibits, restaurants in NJ that serve food from other cultures, and even holiday celebrations. Talk with your kids about how to be open-minded and respectful, even when beliefs don’t align perfectly.

Interact in unstructured settings. Plenty of research suggests that today’s kids are overscheduled and overstructured, which can lead to difficulty engaging informally in the future. Translation: Kids don’t know how to socialize without rules! Change this pattern by encouraging spontaneous interaction, such as visiting the Lincoln Park Diner! Your kids will love our children’s menu as well as the calm, laid-back atmosphere.

Practice “adulting.” As much as we protect kids from the adult world, there are important skills that must be learned. Take this extra time and teach your child about finances, time management, hygiene, household care, self-advocacy, or any other “adulting” task that will help them be independent one day. A learning activity can be as easy as visiting a local diner in NJ and having your child calculate the bill (with tax, for older kids), or to engage in conversation with the server about the details or ingredients of a menu item.

The key to socialization is socializing, and George’s Lincoln Park Diner is the perfect setting! Stop by and visit us 7 days a week.