How to resume play with kids in a Covid observed environment
By Kwame Akinyi
With the schools and daycares closed since the early stages of the Covid-19 pandemic, parents are tasked with taking care of their kids now more than ever. From helping them with their online classes, providing a safe space to setting up activates and chores to keep them engaged.
Under normal circumstances,kids would be home for the August holidays. It would be a time of groupies hanging out and even having sleepovers. But these are not normal times.
However, not all is lost. Parents can still create an atmosphere for their kids where they can play and be safe at the same time. The key to this is getting creative and making the most out of the situation. Also take this period to encourage a passion, if your child has always wanted to learn how to sew, carve, design a game or build a Legoworld, then this is their time to enjoy those unique passions. Here’s how:
Taking play activities can be beneficial for both children and parents. Outdoor spaces provide new objects to interact with and new forms of the natural world to marvel at such as animals,insects, trees and sky. Make sure you mask them up, and remind them to social distance if at all they’ll be mingling with other kids.
Get a kiddie pool.
Kiddie pools have been one of the few lifesavers during this lockdown. It might not compare to the regular swimming pool but it’s a better option given that it’s just your kids in it. Nothing feels better than your kids cooling off in a kiddie pool filled with some of their favorite toys on a hot afternoon. It’s fun and keeps them busy at the same time.
Depending on your neighborhood, you can identify ideal certain spots that are safe for bike rides, with less human traffic. You can engage in playful riding competitions with the kids.
With parks and nature trails slowly starting to open up, you can take the kids for a walk. Take time to enjoy nature and a breath of fresh air with your family. Or you can simply go for an evening walk around your neighborhood.
Plan a scavenger hunt.
If there is one interesting way to keep kids busy and entertained is scavenger hunts. You can come up with a list of items for the kids to find around the house or compound then ask them to go hunting. It could be their toys, a red sweater, or any other simple objects.
Play board games.
These kinds of games can teach reading, math, logic,turn-taking and social skills. You can opt for the classic ludo, snakes and ladders, puzzles, scrabble or even kids’ jenga.
Virtual movie night.
Since the theatres are a no-go zone for now,you can set up a mini theatre in your house for a family movie night. Have popcorns and drinks ready over the kitchen counter, a ticket stand by the dining table and the screening in the living room. Make it fun and memorable for the little ones.