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Family Teamwork

Families are like a team. Each individual family member brings skill, personality, and role to the family team, just as each sports player has a specific position on the team. As a whole, the family shares a history and goals, just as the team works together to win a game. One player may seem more important than others. However, one person can’t play the game by themselves. We need our families to help us live through the happy, good, sad, and painful times.

Providing an opportunity for learning, trying things out, or accepting defeat is an important role of the family. As a family team, we can help each other get through tough times. Because we have family teamwork, they can balance one person’s difficult time with other family member’s strengths.

Activity: What Are Our Family Roles?

Do it: Assemble the family members around a table or on the floor. Make sure each person can write or draw on a piece of paper. Ask each person to write or draw the name of each person on their paper and describe or draw the person’s role in the family. It’s okay to give suggestions such as paying bills, managing allowances, taking care of the family, specific chores, or other roles. Identify as many as possible.

Share It: Have each person talk about the different roles they heard about others and themselves. How did they feel? Share reactions and observations. Ask: How did you feel doing this activity? What was the hardest part? The easiest? What did you like best? Least? What did you learn about yourself? About the family?

Process: Discuss common themes in roles. Look for recurring themes and record them. Ask: Were there common or similar roles with more than one family member? Did most of us agree? Disagree? Why? Why Not?

Generalize: Identify trends and conclusions reached in your family. Emphasize principles that apply to "real life." Focus on what is important to your family. Questions might be: How do these roles relate to other things in our family? How do roles change over time? What are important things to remember?

Apply: Concentrate on how the new learning can be applied to everyday situations. Discuss how this family discussion can be useful in the future. Develop personal or family goals for behavior change. Ask: What are specific family situations where this new learning might be used? How do family members think their conclusions might be different five years from now?

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