I recently went to an advanced screening of the movie The Way, Way Back and I loved it! It’s a coming of age story I completely related to as I was definitely an awkward teen once! And how can you not love the amazing cast, Toni Collette, Steve Carell, Sam Rockwell, introducing Liam James, and the ever so hilarious Allison Janney!

Me and My TweenThis movie got me thinking about how my sweet little 10 year old is growing up and how those awkward teen years are on their way. As I remember how it was being a teen, I want to try to do my best to help my own kids through the transition into adulthood.

Here are a few things we’re doing to help stay connected with our kids, helping them get through those rough teen years!

1. Date Night: We’ve already started doing this with our kids. We’ll get a babysitter for a date night, but take one of our kids with us for their own special night out! This is our favorite thing to do, and our kids love it too. It’s a time where we can really focus on one child at a time. We sit and listen to what they want to tell us, as they can talk to us about anything.

2. Learn Their Language: Get up to speed on the common tongue for teens. Listen to what they talk about with friends. I like to keep my ears open as my kids talk to their friends in the car as we drive around town, the conversations they have. I try to make sure I know who their friends are, having them over to our house. And I try to keep current with what they find interesting. Currently, it’s all about MineCraft these days!

3. Find a Common Interest: My husband and son have really gotten into mountain biking and it’s something they can do together. It’s a great way to share an interest and get on the same level. It’s great bonding time too as they have a common interest they can talk about and discuss throughout the day.

Biking together

4. Be Silly: I know my kids think I’m super annoying sometimes, but I love to be silly with them as much as I can. Lately we’ve been having lots of “staring contests”, and just discovered a “frowning contest” is quite hilarious! I don’t want to stop being silly just because they are getting older. Just like the scene in the movie where they have a water gun fight, that’s what kids need, to see adults getting a little silly too!

What advice other can you share as I’m just about to enter those tween and teen years with my kids? How do you stay connect with your children?

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This post was a sponsored by Fox Searchlight. Be sure to watch The Way, Way Back trailer, in theaters July 5th. And like The Way, Way Back on Facebook, and follow @TheWayWayBack on Twitter #TheWayWayBack.