Social Distancing is one of the best ways to stop the spread of Coronavirus but it isn’t always easy to change our routines. What do you do with your kids while they are stuck at home with lots of extra free time? You can make the most of this situation and help your kids have fun and feel safe.
Set up a simple daily schedule.
Keep it simple but I love the block schedule idea. Section off different times of day for different activities. Routines are great for kids and will help them feel calmer. Here’s my post about Routines. This would be a simple day in our lives.
- School work
- Chores or family cleaning project.
- Something fun
- Family activities
Our schools did not close officially. Teachers still have to go in but kids are learning from home. My kids still have homework online. I’ve found it’s best to plan homework first in the day when their minds are fresh and then they can take longer if needed. If your child doesn’t get homework, there are many free websites and videos to check out. Here are a few ideas that looked like fun!
- Fluency and Fitness
- Khan Academy
- National Geographic for Kids
- ABC Ya
- Smithsonian Channel Videos
- Fun Brain
- PBS Kids
- Ted Ed Videos
- StarFall (Preschool-3rd)
- Storyline Online (Famous people read cute stories)
- Peekaboo Kidz Videos
- Highlights Kids
- Watch Science Mom videos on YouTube
- Listen to a fun educational podcast like…Wow in the World.
- Go on a virtual field trip.
Yep. When my kids are home they have chores to do. Work is a great thing for kids and helps them learn so many skills. Plus a clean put together house just feels so much better. Make a list of things that need doing and let them choose or assign them chores. It’s a great time to have them organize their rooms. Go through their clothes and toys. Here’s my post on how to organize clothes.
It’s important for them to have fun as well. Get creative. Use things you have or order some things to do on Amazon. Here’s a variety of things my kids like.
- Do an art show on the driveway with sidewalk chalk. Look at the ones my daughter created! So beautiful! This is fun for all ages!
- Go on a bike ride. Remember not to stop to talk to people along the way. Keep your distance of 6 feet or more from others. We went yesterday and it felt like a ghost town. It was really nice to get outside!
- Pull out pictures of when the kids were little. Tell some stories about them. My kids still love that.
- Perler Beads are fun kids of all ages.
- Have your kids write to the elderly in a care facility and mail letters.
- Call, Skype, Text, Messenger, or Facetime Grandparents. They love to know what you are up to and really miss the grandkids.
- Diamond Painting is another fun activity my kids like to do. It does take a lot of time and concentration!
- Paint by numbers are a lot of fun too. I’ve even enjoyed these.
- Have down time. Yep. Free time is great. Let them decide what to do.
- Go outside and do yard work or get the garden ready.
- Do a fun craft with duct tape like these wallets.
- Teach your kids to cook or bake something yummy.
- Have a STEM day and do activities like these.
- Build things out of Lego. Make a Lego marble maze or a Maze city for cars.
- Have a paper airplane contest. Here’s some folding techniques.
- Teach them a skill you know: like learning to sew or card making.
- Have a read-a-thon. When I was in school we could get lots of snacks, a pillow and blanket, and our favorite books and spend the afternoon reading. Here’s my post on how to teach your kids to love reading.
Remember to avoid people and places you would normally go. Especially stay away from play-dates, play grounds, and play lands.
Quality Family Activities.
I think one of the best advantages to social distancing is that our nights are now free. We have never had so much free time together as a family. Make the most of your family time. Use it to bring you all closer together.
- Family bike rides are a lot of fun.
- Go on a walk together. But remember to avoid people. Just wave and keep walking. Don’t stop at playgrounds.
- Have a Nerf gun shooting contest. Make a target for practice. Depending on the ages of your kids you can have a Nerf gun war.
- Play a board or card game. We like Wackee Six, Racko, Sequence, and Apples to Apples.
- Wii party!
- Play ping pong together. We played a fun game where we would hit the ball then run clockwise and then hit it on the other side. It worked pretty well with 5 people.
- Soccer, pickleball, basketball, frisbee, or horseshoes. Whatever you have space for and your family likes to do. Get out and play together.
- Do a Puzzle together.
- Go for a drive together. Just remember to avoid people where ever you stop.
- Doorbell ditch treats to a neighbor.
- Make a mini golf course in your back yard. We used to do this when I was a kid. Kids can really get creative with this one.
- Play virtual games with another family. Create a Google Hangout to interact with them.
There are lots of fun things you can do together. My daughter told me yesterday, “I wish schools would close more often.” because we had such a great day. Stay safe and wash your hands lots and lots!