1. With younger children it helps to start with a song. It really brings their attention to focus and it feels like a celebration is starting. (We actually still sing even though our children are older, but I think you have to start that tradition while they are young or it won't work).
2. We have a lesson on family or religious values. This has been huge. It has really allowed us to have a regular time to talk about these things that are important to our family. It is really great to have this forum for discussion, and I can see the great effect it has on our children.
3. We have a fun game or activity- Sometimes we have talent shows, olympics, walks, helping our neighbors, or just a board game. We've even gone swimming or roasted marshmallows in our backyard.
4. We make a treat- Everyone looks forward to this. We make it that night together sometimes, but many times I assign a child to make it ahead of time. They LOVE this. It also helps them learn how to cook.
That's it! Super simple and super fun! Don't expect your kids to sit still while you lecture. Make it a discussion, and be patient with wiggly little ones. Hope your family has fun with this idea!