How do I Plan Family Home Evening?
There are certainly many ways to plan family home evening or family night activities. Our family has developed a basic pattern that easily adapts to most situations.
1. Schedule a time when the family will get together each week.
Remember, no matter how short or long, consistency is the key to the blessings of this principle. Elder Bednar explains this principle very well in an October 2009 General Conference talk More Diligent and Concerned at Home.
2. Plan ahead
Decide what your family should get from this important time together. We usually include a short spiritual message, a game or activity, and a treat. This is an effective way to carry out what we think is important for our family time. By planning ahead, we identify anything that we must buy, make, or coordinate ahead of time.
3. Begin with a song
Hymns are often cited as inviting the spirit into any activity. I really enjoy a talk by Elder Oaks on Worship through Music. He states:
“The singing of hymns is one of the best ways to put ourselves in tune with the Spirit of the Lord.”
We often use these songs that emphasize family:
4. Hold Prayer
Family prayer is a foundation building block. It is an opportunity for families to unite in purpose and focus our minds on shared desires. It is an opportunity to share gratitude for the many blessings your family enjoys. Family prayer is an important opportunity to show examples of prayer and a way to give instruction to children as they offer prayers.
5. Spend quality time together
Many families include a lesson on a gospel principle, take part in an engaging and interactive activity, and have some sort of refreshment. It’s okay to include some or all of these things, or something else entirely. In fact, our family home evening isn’t always about fun. Sometimes it is an appropriate way to discuss family behaviors and rules. It could be a time to sync calendars and de-conflict everyone’s schedule so you have a better idea what is important and who needs your support throughout the week. This is your opportunity to spend purposeful quality time together and build strong family bonds that will last into the eternities.
6. Close the event with prayer
This is an opportunity to express gratitude for strengthened family relationships. It also signals an important transition so all family members know when it is okay to move on to other activities.
Consistent effort to plan family home evening in our home has strengthened relationships in our family. Now that you know how to plan a family home evening visit our lessons and activity pages for more ideas.
Check out 36+ Ideas for More Meaningful Family Home Evenings for a list of official LDS resources to make the most of this important family time.
Also check out some of our book recommendations. These are resources we use regularly. They have shaped the culture of our family and are well worth the investment.