As the pandemic continues, one of the biggest challenges is the reopening of schools. There are concerns that letting kids return to school would lean to an increase in cases. On the other hand, it’s impractical to wait for a vaccine to resume classes. It’s not guaranteed that a vaccine will be developed and eradicate the virus. For a lot of states, the best compromise is to shift to partial or full-time remote learning. It’s not just schools that have moved operations online. Companies around the world have also allowed their employees to work from home.
With the entire household at home, it can be a struggle for the parents. At school, you’re sure that kids are fed and cared for. At home, you have to fulfill your work and parental duties.
To help you multitask, find out how you can keep your children occupied at home:
Fill Their Time Off School
Schools typically end at 03:00 p.m. Meanwhile, work is usually done by 05:00 p.m. or later. To fill the kids’ time, you can enroll them in piano lessons. Instead of playing video games and going on social media, they can learn how to play an instrument. It’s a productive way to spend the time. Studies have shown that musical education can actually change children’s brain for the better. It can even help improve their grades in school.
Before you enroll your son or daughter in music school, make sure to cover your bases. If your child prefers in-person classes, look for a program that follows safety procedures. Otherwise, you can choose virtual classes. You should also teach your kids to regularly sanitize their instrument of choice. Pandemic or not, it’s a just a good hygiene habit to have. This is especially true for wind instruments because they have mouthpieces.
Encourage Physical Activity
One of the biggest downsides of stay-at-home orders is the fewer chances for exercise. With virtual classes and mandated use of masks, people aren’t as active as before. This is especially crucial for children. Before the pandemic, today’s kids already aren’t as active as the previous generation. As people are urged to stay at home, it’s only bound to get worse.
The great news is that you can encourage your kids to remain active without leaving the house. If you have a yard, you can urge them to play sports. You can make it a game with prizes, so they would participate. For example, whoever wins the match can decide what’s for dinner for the following day. If you have a pool, encourage them to swim at least a few days a week. You can watch over them while you’re working so no one would get hurt. If you have limited space at home, there are still other options you can turn to. Just like for adults, there are workout videos made for kids on the Internet.
Being cooped up inside for a long time is not good for kids. You can compensate by encouraging physical activities. Research has shown that exercise is great for children’s mental and physical health. It can improve their quality of sleep and even their performance at school.
Virtual Playtime with Friends
Like physical and mental stimulation, maintaining relationships is also important for kids’ development. One of the pandemic’s side effects is the decrease in social interaction. Kids were used to seeing their friends every day. Because of lockdown measures, the only time they see each other is at their online classes. But it’s not the same, they don’t get to talk or play with each other while their teacher is speaking.
Instead, you can help them maintain social ties by encouraging online video calls. They can speak and catch up with their friends while you’re finishing up work. There are even games they can play while they’re on call. If you live in the same neighborhood, your kids can send each other letters and drawings.
According to medical professionals, it’s normal to worry about how the pandemic is affecting your kids. But it might do more harm than good. A pediatrician has advised parents to prioritize making their kids feel safe rather than anything else. If you’ve noticed a big change in your kid’s behavior, that’s the time to seek professional help.
No one can say how long or short the pandemic will last. While there are high hopes for a vaccine, mass distribution is another issue. The best way to cope with the situation is by adjusting to the circumstances and not stressing over things beyond your control.