Fear and uncertainty—these make a dreadful combination that’s easy to instill doubt and anxiety in an adult. If that’s true, then it’s harder for your children. Being holed up at home and unable to go out and play is a big challenge for them.
Even if they’re of school age, they are still capable of longing for a time when they can play unfettered, without using masks to go around. Sure, they can hone their skills in school without leaving. There are many online enrichment programs to make them like Math and other hard subjects in school. There are other ways to keep them occupied without spending so much time on school, even at home.
Without the time to go out, many children suffer from loneliness and struggle to cope with their isolation. Is there something that can be done if you’ve got children with you at home? Why, yes, there is. Take a look.
Be Honest with the Situation Regarding the Pandemic
As a parent or guardian, you are the best support group for them. They see you as something that can protect them from the pandemic. If you’ve got some fears yourself, it’s best to hide them and avoid showing them to these children.
If you notice that they’re asking many questions about the pandemic, don’t beat around the bush. Be honest with them, but make it gentle. Tell them that people are getting sick and that they need to stay at home to be safe. It can be easier to explain this since the vaccines have started rolling out.
Even then, you should make them realize the importance of the safety protocols. Washing hands and staying a good distance away from other people should still be reminded so that they’ll know.
Be Sensitive to your Child’s Feelings
If you are sensitive to other people’s feelings, you should also be similarly concerned with your child. If you don’t know how to do it properly, try to say it this way: ‘I know that you’re upset because you can’t go out with your friends.’
In case your children are older (don’t necessarily have to be wiser, remember), you can also try to engage them in a conversation about the pandemic. Realize that they’re disappointed about only having to stay at home but remember that it’s a teaching moment too. Make them creative. There are tons of things they can do with their friends even while they’re together apart.
Ask Their Teachers for Help
Your kids have a second set of parents—their teachers from school. Let’s face it; these people are those which you trust to look after your children while they’re studying. That makes them effectively their parents at school, and they’ll know which activities are best for your child while at home.
Set aside time to talk to them about different online and offline educational activities that your children can do. Some school districts may also have solutions for families that can barely afford a stronger Wi-Fi connection. You can also ask them to figure out other activities that your children can do while at home.
Decide on a Time When Kids Can Play Video Games
When kids stay at home, they get bored. They watch TV, look at social media, or play video games. If your child is playing games non-stop, you should make a schedule when they can play video games and when they shouldn’t.
Try to make it like a reward. Let them go to school as normal, then set a time for video games or social media that’s limited. You can adjust or reduce the time according to what you feel—adding time should be a reward for something well done in school or at home, while reducing should be as punishment. Of course, it’s up to your discretion.
Create a Healthy Daily Structure
Another alternative to keeping a healthy day is to create a structure for your children daily. This includes breakfast, school, time for games, and a time for healthy activities. It’s better to include these so that they’ll be physically fit and ready for anything that might happen.
If you’re working out, have them work out alongside you. They can also play games and do activities that will get their hearts running. Anything goes, as long as they get to be active.
Your kids need your guidance to create a healthy balance of life—from school to play, from work to sleep. Remember that you should imitate these, too, as they’ll be looking up to an authority figure to show them the right way to do it.