While staying safe is a priority, the idea of being under restrictive lockdowns or shelter-in-place orders for months on end with your children probably has you a little on edge. Why not use your time together to impart some wisdom while having fun? Here are 10 great activities that you can do with your children that’ll keep them safe, happy, and sane during the COVID-19 pandemic.
#1 Take a Backyard Camping Trip
Get your tents and outdoor gear together for a backyard camping adventure. Choose to camp during a weeknight when the evening skies are alive with meteor showers. The American Meteor Society publishes an annual calendar of the meteor showers that will dazzle the night sky throughout the year. According to astronomers, the Lyrid Meteor Shower peaks between April 21st and 23rd.
#2 Do a Bedroom Makeover
If you or your child has an eye for design, mandatory shelter-in-place orders present you with the perfect opportunity to create a fun, functional space for your child. Make your child’s bedroom makeover as simple as rearranging furniture and adding storage bins or as elaborate as building themed furniture and creating decorative art.
Get design inspiration from archived HGTV episodes that show children’s bedroom remodeling projects. Help your child to pick out base and accent colors that reflect his or her style and personal tastes. Have fun painting, sewing, and crafting for the new room. Hardware stores, fabric shops, and retailers such as Target are still open for business in many regions. If you can’t find the materials that you need at those stores, try ordering the items online.
#3 Conduct a Hygiene Refresher Course
COVID-19 is a severe illness for many people, and most small children aren’t fully aware of the importance of strict hygiene during this time. You can help them to stop the spread of the virus at a personal level by giving them mini hygiene lessons.
#4 Take a Virtual Vacation with Google Maps
You’ve been wanting to take an African safari for a long time, but you never had the vacation time. Thanks to COVID-19 and Google maps, you can make your dream vacation a reality. Instead of flying to the Serengeti at the risk of getting stuck abroad due to international travel restrictions, you and your children can experience Africa’s exotic animals and breathtaking savannas online from the comfort of your living room.
Use Google maps to get a street view of South Africa’s famous Kruger National Park. While on a virtual tour of the park, you’ll see everything from leopards to elephants.
#5 Go Bike Riding
Sunlight, fresh air, and exercise are essential ingredients of good health for growing children and adults. On the right day, outdoor cycling with the family checks each box for healthy fun.
#6 Create a Backyard Garden
COVID-19 experts emphasize the need to stay at home as much as possible and even limit grocery store visits during the pandemic. This is the best time to teach your children how to be more self-sufficient through gardening.
Start your gardening project by planning out the produce that you want to grow by season. Choose a place for your garden in your backyard and build simple raised beds from lumber and potting soil that you can still get at your local hardware store. Start seedlings for beets, carrots, peppers, broccoli, and garlic for spring planting.
#7 Give Cooking Lessons
Your child loves your veggie lasagna, and you often make it for him on special occasions. Teaching your child how to prepare the dish himself is a gift from you that he can later pass to his children.
Give step by step instructions on how to prepare the dish and have him measure and mix the ingredients himself. Type out the recipe for him so that he has it for future reference.
#8 Learn About Medicinal Herbs
Today’s children are overloaded with garbage content on alternative and mainstream media channels. Very little of the news that they hear is good, and fear can easily cause stress about potential shortages of food and medicine. Besides encouraging them to pray, show them how to overcome anxiety by proactively learning new skills.
#9 Visit with Friends and Family on Zoom
When children are out of school, it’s common for them to head straight to their grandparents’ house for frequent visits. Since the novel coronavirus is especially lethal for seniors, the experts warn against physical contact between the elderly and children.
You don’t have to let COVID-19 separate your family entirely. You can take a virtual visit to grandma’s house using your laptop. Zoom is a videoconferencing platform that allows you to set up an account and conduct meetings among multiple people for free.
#10 Learn a New Language
Learn French with your child by taking free courses such as French in Action by Annenberg Learner. You and your child can challenge each other by practicing French words, phrases, and pronunciation.
No matter how disappointed you are about having your life put on hold due to the novel coronavirus, you’ll never get this time back. Children grow up fast, and the time that you spend with them during mandatory lockdowns can be a blessing in disguise.