Quarantine activities that keep children happy and engaged during this time can be challenging to say the least.
For kids under 6, there are many things they’re trying to understand (why can’t I go to school, why can’t I play with my friends, I miss my friends, why can’t we go the play ground) tied in with the bigger questions of health and safety.
I’m sure you’ve had repeated discussions with them about the reasons why; and sometimes they understand & sometimes they don’t. As is the case with many adults:)!
The quarantine activities I’m going to share are geared to help infuse some imagination, fun learning & giving them a sense of ownership while contributing something positive to this grave situation.
Before I post the video below, I wanted to share two tips that I have found helpful whenever I’m working with kids.
Both of these tips work really well within good boundaries. “Please” and “Thank you” go a long way towards having a fun day!
Kids love structure while indoors
1. Whenever I’m planning play dates with kids, I think of ideas of what I want to do with them and then I ASK THEM what they would like to do.
They get really excited because you’re including them in the planning process and encouraging their creativity.
That one question helps them feel like their voice matters. You see their faces come to life simply because you asked them what they wanted to do.
This simple conversation with your kids about the schedule has the effect of growing their self-esteem, leadership, creativity and connection with you.
Conversational Intelligence expert, Judith E. Glaser once wrote, “To develop advanced capabilities in your children’s brain, you need to create a culture of trust where they feel secure enough to play, to experiment, to wonder, to imagine and to give birth to new inventions”
2. Then we sit down and make a list of ALL our ideas.
3. We decide in what order we want to do the activities…We even put time slots for all of them:)!
4. And then, we just let it rip and have fun!
Two amazing things happen as we interact within a structure:
1. The kids actually keep you accountable for the schedule because they’ve been given ownership of the progression of the day.
2. There is a sense of calm the schedule produces, even though some of the activities will be noisy. There is no scrambling, confusion or frustration because we’re all on the same page about what we’re doing for the day.
Kids love responsibility
The more we give kids ‘jobs’ that make them feel mentally, emotionally and physically stronger, the happier they are.
When a child feels that you are entrusting them with a ‘big’ task, it boosts their confidence! It might be something as little as having them crack the eggs while your baking but if a child feels that you’re giving them a chance to contribute, they feel empowered. That’s sense of responsibility builds self esteem, boldness and leadership in them.
So with that in mind, here is the one minute video with a few ideas that, I hope, will make this time of staying in little more peaceful, fun and rewarding for you and your little ones.
I will be posting a video with more fun quarantine activities for adolescent kids in the next few days.
Wishing you and your family health and peace during this time.