Parenting During the New “Normal”
While some states have started back to school physically, many more are still staying the course with online learning.
THE STORY: After months of your kids being at home, you may be wondering if you’re doing all you can to keep them healthy both physically & mentally. Are they having their social needs met while social distancing? Are they partaking in too much screen time? Are you doing enough while working and homeschooling and more? We’ve gathered some tips for dealing with quarantine life while parenting to help you make the most of the ongoing situation.
TIPS FOR A HEALTHY HOME LIFE WHEN YOU CAN’T LEAVE THE HOUSE:
1. Keep a routine. Creating a daily schedule for both yourself and your children will make the days go that much smoother. That means going to bed and waking up at the same time every day like you would if you were leaving the house and deciding where in the house everyone will be doing work or school ahead of time. Posting a daily schedule of the times you’ll be at work as well as a schedule for when your children will be doing schoolwork, chores, etc. Is also helpful.
2. Schedule time for nutritious meals and snacks. Just because everyone is at home and busy doesn’t mean it’s a good idea to simply snack all day or skip meals. If you want to save time, check out our Kids’ Menu featuring healthy meals your kids will love!
3. Spend more time together as a family in the evenings. Maybe before Covid-19 your kids had sports or music lessons and you had a habit of working late - take advantage of the time you have now to reconnect as a family each evening by sharing dinner, playing games, or watching a family film.
4. Make sure your kids are keeping up with Covid-19 health guidelines such as washing hands, wearing masks while out, and staying 6 feet apart. Talk with them about why these things are necessary and if they’re having trouble keeping to it, make it into a game of sorts.
5. The flu vaccine may be more necessary than ever this year. The CDC recommends you and your child get yours by the end of October. They also have a page on their website about the similarities and differences between the flu and Covid-19.
6. When it comes to screen time, while limits are still necessary it’s important to realize that your children’s time with screens will likely increase (in fact, probably already has). More important at the moment may be how screens are being used in your home. Using social media or video chats to help your kids stay in touch with their friends and family they can’t see can help them feel less lonely. The content of what they’re watching can be a useful tool - check with teachers for educational programming they recommend or visit Common Sense Media for videos, games, and more. You could even use this time to take your kids to work with you so they can see what you do! Lastly, don’t have the news playing all the time for both your kids and your own sake.
7. Make sure your kids are staying active. Maybe kids can’t play sports right now or go outside that often to play, but make sure they’re still staying active is vital. Lots of places offer classes via Zoom right now, so see if you can sign them up for karate or kids’ yoga, etc.
8. The world is a stressful place at the moment and that stress affects children differently than adults. The CDC created a Covid-19 Parental Resources Kit full of tips on how to make sure your child is coping in healthy ways.
THE WRAP-UP: We don’t know how long this new “normal” is here for but there are ways to keep you and your family happy & healthy no matter what arises.