Finding ways to entertain and engage your kids during lockdown can prove to be quite a difficult feat. Especially when you are trying to balance work, schooling, and family all at once! A few weeks ago Ps Clare shared her tips on how to help your kids cope with lockdown and deal with anxiety. Many parents are looking for alternative forms of entertainment, and Ps Clare recommended some awesome options!
Here are three easy and fun activities for your kids during lockdown:
1 – Obstacle Course
This activity is best played outside, though can be adapted for inside if the weather doesn’t allow it. Creating an obstacle course for your kids to complete gets their blood pumping, expels some energy, and gets them moving. If playing outside, create a path around and over trees, running downhill, under bushes, and through puddles. If the weather keeps everyone cooped up inside; obstacle courses can be created with chairs, tables, couches, and clothes. Have the kids weave in and out of chairs, jump over clothes, and crawl under the table. Timing the obstacles is another way to keep the kids engaged. Going through the course over, and over again to improve on their time.
2 – Treasure Hunt
Treasure hunts can give parents a nice, big chunk of free time while the kids are off seeking their prize. Though they can take a bit of prep work to get sorted, treasure hunts grow children’s problem-solving skills and teamwork as they play with their siblings. A clue hunt is one way to lay out the treasure hunt. Write clues out with instructions such as “Where you keep your socks” and each hiding spot leads them to the next clue. Be careful to make sure that the level of difficultly in the clues age-appropriate. Otherwise, it may be over too quick if it’s easy, or you may have to help them solve the clues if it’s too hard. And of course, at the end of the trail of clues leave a treasure that rewards the child for their hard work!
3 – Hop Scotch
This game can be adapted once again to be played inside or out. If playing inside make squares using books or other items, whereas outside you can draw your hop scotch path with chalk on the concrete. Make it as elaborate or as simple as you want to, depending on the age of your kids and how long you want the activity to take. First, throw a dice from a given line in front of you. Whatever number the dice lands on determines how many jumps can be taken. If you can’t reach where the dice landed (or further) in the given number of jumps, you are out.
Ps Clare also shared someone incredible tips on homeschooling kids during this lockdown. As a teacher herself she has some awesome insights on what is important to focus on, and what doesn’t need to be stressed about.
For primary school students it is important to focus on reading, writing, and maths. Reading is important in the early years, so it is key to have your kids’ reading. Even if it is the same selection of books over and over again. Ps Clare recommends ‘Star Fall’ as an online resource that helps build children’s confidence in reading. For developing their writing skills, a little practice every day is key. Write down questions for them such as “If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?” And then have them write their answer below. For something a little harder, get out a dictionary and have them choose a word that they have to include in the piece of writing for that day. Make sure you explain and have a conversation about the word with your child so they understand and can add that word to their vocabulary. Your top priority when teaching your child maths should be ensuring that they can recite their basic facts and time tables (up to 12x). Every day do tests with them, mixing up orders of times tables and changing addition and subtraction signs with the same numbers. Once they have a certain sum nailed move onto the next one. Leave the more complicated stuff to the teachers, just ensure that you help them with the basics.
With all of this being said, the key is attitude. Sit down with your kids and explain to them what you expect of them. What attitudes you are looking for and which attitudes you will not tolerate. This will help grow your family and keep the peace in lockdown.