A good old-fashioned game of “statues”, musical bumps or musical chairs. A dance comp. Gymnastics comp. Ninja obstacle course. A game of 2 square. Totem tennis.
4. Choose games that work to your advantage….
– Yes, I take my laptop or phone into the pantry during games of hide and seek
– Set up a drawing challenge… but your drawing is your work
– Send them off on a treasure or scavenger hunt – you can make it as simple as items that are yellow, items that start with A, or use some of the great printables going around like the ones from @thefestiveco
– Get the kids to set up a zoo, a doctor office or a café where they make signs, menus, receipts etc (while you are a customer working or the receptionist)
– Set challenges…who can build the tallest tower, who can build the best cubby house, who can build the best ship out of a box, the best Lego rocket etc. There’s a great 30-day Lego challenge going around, and I love this nature list
5. Ditch the screen time guilt
I love that meme…”turn the subtitles on and BAM, your kids are reading”. I’ve got to be honest; I’m embracing screen time. It’s the only way I can get stuff done. BUT I’m not feeling guilty about it, because I’m trying my best to use it in a positive way, there are SOOO many great resources out there at the moment. We’re loving:
– Australian Reptile Park has amazing live streams and educational videos (our fave was the Funnel Web milking)
– Facetime play dates… Teddy has played Lego, hangman, guess who, guess the drawing and more (as well as discussing poo and Minecraft eyeroll) while Frankie and her friends love a houseparty disco playdate
– Google 3D animals…type an animal’s name into google in your web browser, then click view in 3D to bring a life size version into your lounge room. Start with tiger, shark or penguin for wow factor.
– Podcasts – our current faves are Dr Snotbottom and The Fact Detectives, both found on Kinderling Kids Radio. Kinderling also has loads of great storytimes, dance activities and playlists.
– Little Creatures Playtime have taken their business online and each weekday at 10.30am have Storytime’s, crafts, science experiments and more
– Teddy loves Code Camp who have been offering a free school holiday program …and now I’m adding coder to my list of digital marketing skills LOL
6. Fun family dinner
Despite all my planning, at some point one or all of us (including, ok usually, me) ends up losing their shit. So, at the end of the day we’re enjoying doing family dinners (which aren’t usually possible when we’re both at work). Easy shared themes work well…. all making pizzas, or DIY wraps, tacos, rice paper rolls. The adults enjoy a well-earned drink and we reconnect, and each share our highlights and lowlights of the day. It’s my hope that it means that at the end of all of this, they’ll remember COVID-19 as a special family time where we learned, laughed and grew together.