I know, I know, you keep hearing it… “It’s been a weird, scary, and wild time in history!”
And maybe you’re thinking, “There’s so much we have no idea about! What could possibly be next? How do we get ready for fall if school districts aren’t even ready? What will school and afterschool look like? What about my own job? How can I work from home and keep parenting my kids? I am not equipped!”
Your questions are seen and valid. You are not alone.
I have been hearing these questions happen all around me: on social media, with friends, and in other news articles. At the same time, I am also witnessing that parents are tired and feeling hopeless. Further, kids are BORED, RESTLESS, and even ANXIOUS. There is a feeling of guilt and overwhelming parental responsibility happening with my friends, and they are starting to give up on trying. They are feeling defeated by these circumstances. They are giving up on providing opportunities for their kids to stay creative, structured, learning, and then the result is the dependency on TECHNOLOGY.
Don’t get me wrong, we need technology more than ever now. And still, we must monitor what’s happening to our kids — especially if they are using devices during #StayAtHome as their ONLY source of entertainment. There is research behind too much technology usage on developing young brains.
A gentle message, “Parents- DON’T GIVE UP NOW! Push a little harder on yourselves to stay vigilant and don’t lean on devices as babysitters.”
If you’re feeling overwhelmed and tired and anxious about the present and future, you are not alone (and you know that).
But what will differentiate you from other families is how you manage this challenging time. How can you stay mindful and proactive instead of being victimized by these very real current events? How can you be their superheroes?
Below are a few ideas that may be reminders for you. Hopefully they are reminders that excite you and will lengthen your list of options. In the long run, your kids will be grateful that you were looking out for them, inspiring and caring for them like a master planner during this unpredictable time for all of us.
1 – Keep a Schedule! Share this tool for your older kids, have them enter some activities they can do the keep busy. Here is an actual work schedule for school days at home good for younger kids, presented by fellow BOOST Blogger @mangomary. For summertime, cut it in half and keep your kids learning this summer! Prevent summer learning loss. Kids need structure as much as they need rest and relaxation.
2 – Read together with younger kids and request that the older kids find a few fun summer reading books. Start them reading again. Even audio reading is better than constant gaming or TikToking.
4 – Go for family walks or safely visit parks and beaches where they are open.
5 – Back to basics: Play charades, board games, do puzzles, learn a new card game, or karaoke.
6 – Find fun educational resources online vs mindless empty content, do not let their beautiful minds become under stimulated during #StayAtHome. If you are using devices, try these!
- Do an art project
- Listen to great music together or create a family playlist
- Remember Word Searches? Or Madlibs?
- Visit a virtual museum
- How about a trip to Mars?
- Create your own crossword puzzle
7 – Have you found another family that you feel safe with? Coordinate visits and activities so that you all have something to look forward to. Stay 6 ft apart, wear masks, socialize when you’re ready!
8 – Get involved, volunteer where it’s safe and you and the family can do a project together. Or do something online.
9 – Current events- this is wild time in history, find an article a day, read it as a family, have your kids find the article. Discuss it at dinner, make sure they understand what is happening.
10 – Read articles on Edutopia about summer learning loss.
Maybe you have ideas to add? Please leave them below in the comments section, everyone can benefit.
Building your resiliency skills is during hard times will be the best model for your kids! And more importantly, dig your heels in, because we have a wild ride ahead of us.
For breakfast, I have been doing intermittent fasting for two months, time to tuck in the belly!