When I photograph young families, especially in the park, I have a number of objectives. Of course, a major objective is to keep the little ones happy, or at the least interested in what is going and attentive to the camera. Another important factor is the choice of a background which depends greatly on if it a sunny or cloudy day. If it is sunny out then finding sufficient shade without sunspots on the ground is critical. Ideal lighting definitely is a cloudy or overcast day which gives nice soft lighting.
I like close together portraits when there are babies and young children. By having the parents lay down keeps all the faces close together and IMO give it a gentle sense of family intimacy.
When I photograph in the park I don’t limit the young family portrait to one setting or a specific group posing but do 2 or 3 different locations and compositions.
Then at a later date we view the portraits on a movie screen at my studio. It sure is a fun experience for the parents as we narrow the poses down to their favorites and I help them place their order for portraits that they will treasure for years to come.