COVID-19: 10 Ways to Keep Your Kids Busy at Home

family playing board game

While staying at home has become the new norm for all of us, keeping our kids occupied and thriving has become a challenge on its own. Here are some creative ideas that might save your sanity while hunkering down at home:

  1. Go camping: Cover up two pieces of furniture (like the edge of a sofa and a loveseat) with a bedsheet. Make it cozy by adding some pillows and favorite toys. Add a flashlight and let your kids’ imagination go wild. You can share some scary stories, go “searching” for wild animals, or make it a secret hideout.
  1. Play board games: Any board game you have on hand will work. Some of our favorites are Monopoly, Twister, Scrabble, and Headbandz. 
  1. Sharpen education skills: There are so many education sites out there.  Some of our favorites are Khan Academy, Scholastic, and PBS Learning Media. Here’s a list of education sites offering free subscriptions due to school closings: https://bit.ly/3bf09sr.
  1. Repurpose old cardboard boxes: You can make a rocket ship, race car, kitchen, playhouse, guitar, etc. You’ll need to help with the initial planning and cutting, but the kids can decorate the rest and play with it for hours. 
  1. Play Cards: Teach your kids the forgotten art of playing cards. Individual games such as Solitaire ought to keep them busy on their own for a little while. Here is a link to learn some classic card games: https://bit.ly/2UadIDN. 
  1. Explore nature: Getting fresh air and soaking in some sun will revitalize your body and spirit. Play in your backyard, go for a walk in your neighborhood, find a hiking trail, ride your bike – all are fine as long as you’re at a safe distance (about 6 feet) from others.
  1. Workout together at home: It is important for kids to get at least one hour of vigorous activity. YouTube is a great resource for workout videos – some of our favorites are GoNoodle, Cosmic Kids Yoga, and The Body Coach. Here is a link to some of the top kids’ workout videos: https://bit.ly/2Utuexv.
  1. Cook or bake together: Whether it is chocolate chip cookies, pizza, or noodles, make it a tradition to cook your kids’ favorite food items with them. 
  1. Chores and rewards: Keep a list of weekly chores for each kid. Link it with a reward system, and you’ll be sure to get a helping hand from your little ones while teaching them responsibility.  
  1. Practice gratitude: While this confining situation is new for you, it is also new for your child. Be sure to talk about what is going in the world and stay positive and hopeful. Make it a point to practice daily gratitude with your child – whether it is through art, praying, or journaling. In turn, you will experience a calming and comforting effect on your home environment.

And remember, this situation is only temporary. This too shall pass. Let’s make the best of what we have and make our family bonds deeper and more meaningful.

Stay happy and safe!

Author
Health One Family Medicine

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