Families all over the world are going through challenges these days with the coronavirus crisis jostling our routines and daily lives. It’s not easy to keep the kids entertained plus educated while you might need to get on with your own work at the same time. But the good thing is that kids are highly creative and imaginative, so you don’t have to buy lots of new toys to keep them busy. As outdoor playground playing is discouraged, it will be the family home that will turn into one instead. It might be the kitchen table that will be used for arts and crafts activities, the living room that will have its ice-cream shop in the middle, the bathroom that will serve as a beauty parlor…One thing is for sure, your tidying-up rules will need to be different for the next couple of weeks!
However, if some rules will be set aside or loosened, try to keep some routine during the day. Children are used to a schedule, so why not write down on a piece of paper when it’s time for play and when it’s time for learning or relaxing and stick it onto the wall clearly visible for all. Otherwise you as a parent will end up exhausted at the end of the day.
You might also want your children to avoid too much screen-time by suggesting a few activities and play. Here are some of our ideas.
TEEPEES AND PLAYHOUSES
Your children will especially appreciate having their own hide-in during this period. They can read books, play with toys or dolls, do homework or simply daydream inside it. If one of the parents has more free time than usual, then why not consider building one? There are lots of tutorials on the internet, but of course you need to have materials handy, which could be wood or branches from the garden or forest nearby and the family’s bedding sheets. Your child can also try to build their own with left-over cardboards from the supermarket.
If your child reads on his own, it will help him to learn the difference between “real” and “make-believe” as well as understanding changes or frightening events. Reading promotes brain development and imagination, perhaps even to learn a new language. Also, try to make time for reading a story together with your child, as this special time will promote bonding and help build your relationship.
GAMES AND PUZZLES
Both kids and adults love to play with puzzles and games. It challenges thinking whilst exercising our minds. Puzzles are especially beneficial for toddlers and young children as they provide many skills and mental learning. The process of finishing a puzzle requires patience, problem-solving and achieving a set goal which will bring him satisfaction and self-esteem. Winning a game obviously boosts self-confidence and prepares children for challenges in life.
ARTS AND CRAFTS
Colouring-in, drawing, sewing, patching, gluing and assembling requires hand and finger movements which will improve the overall motor skills of the child. Over time, your child will gain speed and artistic skills. Arts and crafts are also excellent for allowing children to express themselves and can bring out hidden feelings and emotions in introverted children. Avoid as much as possible giving your child ready-made tutorials with images of completed creations. In this way, you’ll encourage him to learn to make decisions in order to innovate himself.
Children need to learn about themselves and the world that surrounds them. Pretend play are some of the first ways children learn about their likes and dislikes, their interests, and their abilities. Role playing helps them to make sense out of what they have observed in the adult world. Through these role plays, children become more prepared for life events (take a visit to the doctor as an example) and cultivate social and emotional intelligence.
There are of course endless examples of imaginary play, and children are usually the creators of them. We as adults, often under-value the benefits of these simple activities, yet within them, young children learn practical skills and to make sense of things. Whether it be a kitchen table that becomes an instant castle, or some pieces of furniture that become the start and beginning of a tunnel by a sheet placed in between them, all ideas are fun and should be encouraged. It is also a great way for children to relax and unwind.
We as all of you, hope this difficult time will soon be a memory of the past. Let’s hope parents will look back at it and remember the quality time they had with their children (maybe playing too), and that children will remember the best and fun times ever of their lives playing!
Do you have any ideas of fun activities or play for kids during the coronavirus crisis? We would love to see them! Please tag your image on Instagram with #kidsinteriors_com so we can consider your idea for a repost in our stories
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