COVID-19 & School Closures

Friends, these are different times. There’s no toilet paper or Tylenol, no hugging or high fives, and Corona sales are down. What is the world coming to?!?!?

In all seriousness, even if you don’t follow the news you’re probably well aware of the global conversation these days. There’s a lot of talk about toilet paper and how crazy everything is … but there’s also a lot of fear. And rightly so. COVID-19 has streaked the globe faster than Will Farrell did in Old School. And that’s saying something. (Cause Will Farrell’s pretty fast.)

It’s true that we need to try and control this virus, but I believe we need to control our conversations too, especially around our kids.

This became apparent to me recently when my 9-year old daughter told me she started feeling afraid when she noticed that all of the toilet paper was gone. “What does this mean mommy??!” she asked, all doe-eyed and scared. It was in that moment I realized — what was funny to me was scary to her.

Our children are watching us. And not every kid can sift through the toilet paper jokes or fear effectively, which is why it’s our job to stay level-headed and point them to HOPE! (Romans 15:13) It has to start with us though, which is why I wrote this post.

No parent anywhere is feeling pumped about the school closures. If you’re anything like me, you’ll probably run out of things to do by Day 5. 🙄 In an attempt to bring you some HOPE then, I asked a few mom friends what their favorite indoor / outdoor activities are so I could pass them along to you.

So here it goes – my list of compiled activities and resources from moms near and far. ENJOY!!

Strengthen the Brain

  • TEACH REMOTELY: If you want some great ideas on how to keep school a part of the closures, check out this k-12 resource!
  • COOL MATH GAMES: I always thought my 9-year old was requesting to play this because she loved math. Nope. She likes the NON-math games – ha! But there ARE some “cool math games” on the site too. (I made her show me.)
  • CEREAL PROBABILITY: Take all of the cereal you have in your house and put it in a bowl. Tell your kids to predict how many Cheerios, for example, they will grab with each handful. Have them track their results and graph them. Then eat the results.
  • AUDIO BOOKS: Listen to audio books downloaded from your local library, OR search for some favs on YouTube.

Quiet Time / Screen Time

  • WATCH FROZEN 2 (on Disney +): Watch it once for fun and once in costumes! Make each person stand up and perform when their character starts singing.
  • DRAW ALONGS: Think Bob Ross and “happy trees” , but for kids. There are tons of “How to draw” videos, but some popular ones are Elsa (big surprise) and Baby Yoda. Search for your kids’ favorite!
  • STORY PIRATES PODCAST: Kids submit their own made-up stories to this podcast and then someone turns the stories into sketch comedy and songs.
  • KNIT / CROCHET / MAKE FRIENDSHIP BRACELETS: This is a classic one, but for good reason.
  • CATS CRADLE: Omg you guys, the minute my 9-year old busted this game out ALL of the memories came flooding back! So fun.
  • FACETIME WITH FRIENDS: I don’t know about you, but my extrovert children are dying for some contact. This is one good way to appease their FOMO.

Inside Parties

  • CREATE RESTAURANTS: Have your kids design menus and “dining experiences” and have them cook an actual meal (if they’re old enough). Otherwise just bust out the play food and have a pretend feast!
  • BEACH PARTIES: Turn up the heat, put on some swimsuits, play in the bath (with bubbles #foamparty), bop the beach ball until Jimmy Buffet stops singing … the options are endless!
  • BUILD FORTS: Again, another classic. For littles, just pile a bunch of pillows on the floor and let them crawl around on them. Maybe even make an obstacle course for them to run through while you throw stuffed animals at them. (Seriously, kids love this.)

Get Outside

  • TAKE “TREASURE” HUNTS: Pick “treasures” to hunt for before you go outside, like pine cones, pennies, baseball-sized rocks, etc. Your kids could even make a treasure map afterward and hide one of the “treasures” they found!
  • SEARCH FOR RAIN / MUD PUDDLES: (Not for the clean-of-heart) Put on your rain boots and go looking for rain puddles. Once you find them, elbow-bump, and jump IN!
  • VISIT NEW PARKS: Try a new one each day! You can make it educational, too, by having your older kids write realistic non-fiction chapters based on your adventure. Or have them pick up trash and write a report on ecological awareness / recycling.
  • TP SOMEONE’S HOUSE: Just kidding – wanted to see if you were still reading. 🙃

If you’ve got other ideas, PLEASE SHARE THEM in the comments section on facebook or on this post! We all need to stick together during this time.

No go and make some memories with your kids. WE CAN DO THIS!!!

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