Playtime during the Pandemic

Everywhere you go you will see images, newsarticles and social media feeds full of the Covid-19 topic.

Apart from telling my children the basics of why we are in self-isolation, why the schools have closed and why we are washing our hands extra , I have tried to make staying at home and being home schooled an adventure.

Now, I am studying full time for my masters degree and my husband is working fulltime, so home schooling and caring for four children, one of which is an Aspie, is not the easiest. And I am not saying it is! But there are things we can do to make it easier on ourselves, and the children.

The best advice I have for anyone/everyone who wants it is: Make this a time they will remember fondly. Right now what is happening in the world will be written in history books, so let’s make sure when our kids are telling their story of this event to their own kids they have something positive to say about it.

It’s easy for us parents to feel overwhelmed and stressed with the added pressures we have on our shoulders right now, but we have to remember to take care of our own and our children’s mental wellness.

Routine:

It’s really important during these quarantine times to have a routine. Not a strict one, but simple things, such as bedtime and morning routines, helps the children (and you) work better during the day and makes the children stay more balanced.

Adaptability:

Out of all my children my little Aspie is the one who loves the home schooling/no socializing adventure the most. No suprise there. To quote her: “I always dreamed to be home schooled”. Bless her ❤
Socialising is not something that our Aspie does a lot usually but since she can only socialise digitally now, she seems much more comfortable and has spoken/played a lot more than usual. Daily digital socialization!

Children are wonderful at adapting, but here are a few of my tricks I use at home. Hopefully they will help you guys too. 🙂

My top 5 Playtime tips:

Now these tips are what I use when I need to concentrate on study/work and/or the children are feeling bored. It’s basically a way for them to stay busy for a bit with limited use of a screen and a great way for you to get some other things done, without feeling guilty.

1. Build a fort- 3 types

This is a fun, simple and easy activity to set up that can last for…as long as you wish.
If you have a tiny playtent you can set that up with some twinkly lights and fluffy pillows.

If not then building a fort with a blanket and some chairs, sofa pillows… anything you may have. Even just throwing a blanket over a table. The idea is that they can crawl inside and totally immerse themselves in the world you have created for them.

Now inside your little tent you can put one or all of the below:

a) Put a small stack of age appropriate books

b) A selection of their favourite toys

c) Art fort! Crayons, colouring books, paper…you name it. This artistic little fort will suit any creative child. 🙂

2. Lego/Duplo games

I cannot stress enough how much I adore Lego’s teaching concepts and marvelous ideas. There are so many inventive games your kids can play with the use of lego/duplo. Things like: builing their own checkers game, mini cinema or even tossing duplo pieces into a bin and counting score. There are so many ideas that I could probably fill an entire blog with just that.

Check out their official pinterest account for creative lego ideas and of course check out all their awesome online games, apps and tools to becomig a Master builder. 🙂

Check out these cool educational videos from #Lego

3. Screen time

Screen time, in my book, is a good thing if we are concious of what they are watching and the time spent on screen. So here are a few links to our favourite educational videos and games.

  1. Virtual Museum tours – great for school kids!
  2. Sesame Street – Wonderful for tinytots
  3. Alphablocks – Letters and words
  4. Numberjacks – Numbers and counting
  5. Mister Maker – Arts and crafts!
  6. Lego – Educational and creative videos!

4. Playdough / Salt dough fun

Click on the image to check our our favourite Playdoh friends!

Whilst in quarantine it can be hard to get hold of our favourite playdoh so we make our own. This is easy to make from scratch , but you can probably also order from play doh online.

Click here for my favourite Saltdough recipe.

Set up your child(ren) with all the baking utensils they could need, placing a plastic table cloth at a table and let them get creative.

5. Kids yoga

Stuck in the house during these quarantine times can be hard work and stressful for our little ones. To get them moving in a fun way I warmly recomend CosmicKids yoga. It is a brilliant youtube channel where the yoga is made into a fun interactive story for the children to copy. We love it!

Now stay safe everyone, wash your hands and stay healthy.

Take care xx

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