7 tips to keep your kids engaged in this Lockdown
Summer Vacation was just around the corner when Lockdown due to Coronavirus brought a new way of life for kids and adults alike. But this summer vacation is one of a kind: you can’t take your kids out on vacation, you can’t send them to summer camps, you can’t send them outside to play with their friends, you can’t take them to the relatives’ houses for a fun day out.
This one of a kind summer vacation has brought out a new set of challenges for the parents who have to cater to their kids twenty-four seven. This might sound scary but I’m sure by now you have learned to deal with it a little bit better. But there are so many ways that you could improve the lives of your children by keeping them engaged in different ways which will mean that your lives will also get much easier and better.
So, here are some tips to guide you through this lockdown so that you can maintain familial peace and also help in the growth of your child.
1. Find them a hobby: With so much free time on the hands, it is a really good opportunity to develop a hobby which might not have been possible before. There are so many things you can do inside the house. You can start by doing dance classes by watching tutorials on youtube. It will be a fun and healthy activity. Or you can give them a drawing book and ask them to sketch their heart out.
This will help them create new art, become creatively inclined and also keep them busy. They can also pick up Yoga or start learning new recipes or just help you in the kitchen. Cooking can be a very fulfilling activity and there’s a high chance that the parents might also get some help out of it.
2. Develop reading habits: Reading is one of the best things that can be done in the time of lockdown. Depending on the age of your kid, you can either read to them daily or ask them to read books that they enjoy.
If you have a kindle, you will have unlimited options available but you can also go online and download pdfs of different books and read them on your laptop or mobile. Reading will not only keep your kids engaged but also make them more intelligent and curious about the world. This habit, if developed, will help your kids throughout their lifetime.
3. Journal writing: During these tough times, everyone is going through a range of emotions and feelings, including the kids. They might not be able to verbally express what they feel so writing down a journal can be a great idea. They can note down the happenings of their day or how they felt and how they are feeling. This will help them deal with the situation better. They can also start a Gratitude journal which can be a family activity and everyone can list 5 things they are grateful for, every night.
4. Talk to each other: This is such an appropriate time for everyone to be on their phones, laptops, etc. and just try to forget about the world. Most of the kids, as well as parents, are losing precious time by being on their screens all the time. Since everyone is forced to be locked inside their homes, it is better to get to know each other and talk to each other.
After things start to get back to normal, everyone will be busy and we won’t get enough time to engage in important conversations. This is the best opportunity to spend quality time with your kids and inspire a sense of connection with them.
5. New ideas of learning: Just because your kids aren’t in school, does not mean they need to stop learning. You can try to make learning fun by making games out of their lessons. If you have little kids, you can make them learn capitals of countries, make games out of word meanings, spellings, etc., play atlas with them.
Pick up their books and do the activities mentioned in them. Make sure your kids do not get out of touch with their studies and learn something new every day.
6. Use technology carefully: Many parents decide to give their kids complete access to technology in order to keep them busy but it can have an adverse effect on them. Too much technology will be bad for their development.
But that does not mean you need to cut them off completely. Use it to let them interact with their friends so that they feel a sense of belonging and stay in touch with their friends. You can also use educational apps that can keep your child engaged but make sure they do not use screens for prolonged periods of time. They can play board games after each session of educational apps.
7. Set up a schedule: Incorporating all the activities listed above, make a schedule for them. A set routine will give them a sense of normalcy which is anyway lacking in these difficult times. This will also make them more responsible especially if you add tasks like cleaning up their room, watering plants, setting up the dining table.
But make sure you leave room for flexibility so that your child can do one activity of their own choice in order to just enjoy themselves and be a kid.
During these trying times, the job of a parent is not only to protect their child but also to make sure their life and growth don’t stop. Be patient with them and open all channels of communication. The more they are able to share their feelings, the better you can be at parenting. It is important for us to be sensitive to our kid’s needs and desires and it will happen only if we treat them with care. Answer all their questions so that they feel safer and are not scared. The condition of the whole world is difficult right now but it has given us an opportunity to bond with our family and be grateful for the things we take for granted.