Posted on April 7, 2020 at 4:40 PM by Sarah Wilkinson
Social distancing means your kids are at home a lot
more than they used to be. If you're looking for a few more ways to keep them entertained, read on!
- Even though school is closed, make a schedule with your kids. Plan out specific times for meals and snack times, homework/school time, reading, games, crafts, outside/physical activity. Your day will fill up in no time! Khan Academy has some sample schedules for Pre-K through 12th Grades.
- Make your own:
- Snow: Mix equal amounts of baking soda and hair conditioner to make the softest, nicest-smelling “snow.” Use a jelly roll pan to keep everything contained.
- Homemade play dough: 1 cup of white flour, 1 cup of water, ½ cup of salt, 1 teaspoon of cream of tartar, 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil and your choice of food coloring. Stir everything together in a big nonstick pan for 5 minutes over medium heat. Store it in a tightly sealed container to use it again tomorrow!
- Slime: Stir together: a 6-ounce bottle of Elmer’s glue, ½ teaspoon of baking soda and 1½ tablespoons of contact lens solution. Add a few teaspoons of water to make it stretchier, or some glitter for bling.
- Play hide-and-seek!
- For little ones, a sensory bin will keep your kids busy for hours. Hours. Get a big shallow box or tub and fill it with whatever you have on hand – buttons, straws, cotton balls, extra rice or beans. Check out some of these ideas for non-food sensory bins. Then give your children measuring cups, funnels, a colander, or whatever you have in the cabinets. Tip: Spread a shower curtain or sheet on the ground first to make cleanup easy.
- If you have leftover tubes from all that toilet paper or paper towels, make your own DIY marble run. Tape tubes to the wall and roll marbles or pompoms through the maze.
- Get physical and create your own obstacle course: Scatter the couch cushions around the living room or house and see if your kids can hop across all the islands (cushions) without falling into the ocean (floor).
- Do your kids love listening to stories? Pinna Audio is an audio-streaming service for kids 3-12 and right now they’re offering a 60 day free trial period with the code PINNA4KIDS.
- Use old boxes, cut them up, tape them up and paint them to create a kids clubhouse. You can even string lights inside, add pillows and stuffed animals to make it extra cozy.
- Did you know you can make an ocean in a bottle? Take an empty water bottle, fill half with oil and half with colored water. Boom, ocean.
- Use a roll of painter’s tape to turn your living room floor into roadways for all those Matchbox cars.
- Watch the Beluga whales at the Georgia Aquarium. Or look up other zoos and aquariums online – a lot of them have live webcams for you to watch the animals!
- Board games, card games and puzzles are always a good standby.
- Learn a dance together and make a family video. Your kids probably already know the Blinding Lights dance, but maybe they’ll teach you and you can make a family video. You don’t have to post it to TikTok, you could just text it to your far away family members.
- Try an at-home science experiment. Steve Spangler from 9News has some easy, kid friendly ideas.
- Go for a walk, a bike ride, or do something outside. Just make sure to stay with your family group and maintain 6 feet of distance from other people and children outside.
- Google “things to do with my kids at home” and revel in the thousands of recommendations from parents like you, stuck at home with their kids.
- COVID-19 Survival Guide for Parents with Children: 16 pages of resources including learning games, math, history, science, geography, reading, writing, foreign language, arts and music, tech and coding! http://www.northark.edu/Assets/uploads/files/About-Us/COVID 19 Survival Guide.pdf
- Little Red Schoolhouse: Sing-alongs, arts and crafts ideas, and more for 12 weeks – 5 years. http://www.littleredbreck.com/weareallinthistogether/
- Lunch Doodles with Mo Willems: Short, daily drawing lessons with Mo Willems, author of “Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus”. https://www.kennedy-center.org/education/mo-willems/
- PBS Kids: Educational television series playing live 24/7. https://pbskids.org/video/livetv
- Scholastic: Day-by-Day Projects to keep kids learning for Pre-K through 9th Grades. https://classroommagazines.scholastic.com/support/learnathome.html
- Storytime Online: Celebrated actors reading children’s books alongside creatively produced illustrations. https://www.storylineonline.net/
- Summit County Library: Virtual events like Storytime and Lego Club all on Facebook Live videos. https://summitcountylibraries.org/programs-news/calendar
- Zero to Three: Age-appropriate responses to common questions, a guide to self-care, and activities for young children experiencing social distancing. https://www.zerotothree.org/resources/3210-tips-for-families-coronavirus