The Coronavirus has changed life as we know it. This is especially true for parents that are now home with their children 24/7. Since the shut-down of daycares and schools, many moms and dads have taken on the new roles of full-time caregiver, educator and lest we forget - entertainer!
Whether your children are toddlers or teens, the last few months have certainly surfaced some new challenges. Let's look at some ways that you can not only survive but THRIVE during this time,
Here's the tough part: keeping the littles busy. Check out these ideas to keep your kids entertained long enough for you to answer an email or two :)
Grab some popcorn and visit museums - virtually! You can help your children connect with culture by exploring over 1,200 museums around the world.
Join Lunchtime Doodles with Mo Willems. Every weekday at 1 PM, the AMAZING children's book author and illustrator virtually hosts a Q+A and studio tour along with downloadable and interactive at-home activities.
Get some energy out with dance classes hosted by Debbie Allen! These Instagram live classes will have the whole family moving and grooving!
If you haven't heard of GoNoodle you're missing out! It's an engaging platform with movement and mindfulness videos created by world-renowned child development experts.
Kid-friendly yoga, anyone?! Cosmic Kids Yoga will keep the body busy and mind calm!
Infants need stimulation, too! Check out this great article that gives you 12 easy DIY sensory activities for your curious babies!
**Expert tip:**Pinterest is FULL of creative ideas to keep kids of all ages entertained throughout the day!
Being suddenly thrown into this new world of educating your child from home can be scary! Luckily, there are MANY easy and free resources to make things a little less stressful. Just remember, any amount of time you spend with your youngins is time well spent. So, don't get overwhelmed with trying to be perfect or keeping to an exact schedule.
For high schoolers, Fiveable is a free resource for advanced placement class learning and test prep.
WGBH and PBS have curated FREE, standards-aligned videos, interactives, lesson plans, and more. You can search by grade or subject to get started.
4-H has an array of free activities on 4-H at Home, including science projects and arts and crafts.
Khan Academy Kids is aimed for kids ages 2 - 7. It's 100% with NO ADS and is chock full of learning and self-discovery!
Looking for daily projects to keep the kiddos learning and engaged? Check out Scholastic Learn at Home! They're offering free online resources during the crisis, including 20 days of lessons for grades Pre-K to 9 and up to three hours of lessons per day.
If science isn't your strong suit, check out Backpack Sciences. It's full of ready-to-go lessons and ideas.
It's tough for teenagers now that they are unable to socialize with their friends. This is why keeping them informed about what is happening is so important. Many teens are facing big letdowns as graduations, proms, sports seasons, college visits and other long-planned events are being canceled or postponed. Be sure to support them and let them know that while you are unsure of when life will resume as normal, that you are there for them!
Just as you would before COVID, set a time to wake up, exercise, shower, get dressed, have breakfast or whatever else they need to start the "school day." If it helps, allow your teen to sleep in a little later than normal. Adhere to the rules of the normal classroom and have them turn their phones off while doing schoolwork. Make sure to keep the TV off during school hours, too, and set a good example. Have them take mini breaks as well as plan for a lunch break. This schedule will allow them to feel more like they are back in school and less like they are stuck at home.
Dinner is a great time to talk and share a meal at the end of the day! Ask your teen how he or she is feeling and share your thoughts as well. You could even ask them to share their favorite part of the day.
It's normal for teens to crave privacy from their family, remember those days? So be sure to give them a little space for some time to themselves as well as time to hang out with friends virtually. This can help ease any feelings of being isolated from their friends/classmates or difficulties with routine-change.
How are you supporting + managing your family throughout the COVID pandemic? Comment below!