There are ways for parents to keep kids entertained while at home because of daycare and school closures due to the recent outbreak of coronavirus. In fact, you can keep children informed of current health and wellness conditions as well as let them have fun. And, it’s productive to create fitness routines and practice ways to keep up to date with schoolwork via distance or online learning.
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Learning can be fun with hands-on educational activities like a How to Be a Great Sibling Kit and How to Be a Pediatrician Kit from Little Medical School. The sibling package covers topics like preparing for baby, being a sibling-helper and keeping baby safe. Children can explore topics like a baby's birth, examining a baby and changing a diaper in the pediatrician set, which also features a lab coat, stethoscope and a patient in the form of a plush baby toy; these are essential for burgeoning pediatricians. Upon completion of each kit, reward your child with a certificate which is also in the box. $29.99 per kit, littlemedicalschool.com.
Instead of visiting a local theater, consider a movie night in with your family. Streaming services like Hulu and Netflix offer a bevy of movies with categories like children, animation, comedy, mystery and more. If you're on a budget, you're in luck because both services offer a free month's subscription for first-time subscribers. When it comes to snacks, bake cookies from scratch or plan to pick up some in advance during a grocery run. Subscription terms and costs vary. Hulu, hulu.com. Netflix, netflix.com.
Purchase a few packs of Crayola washable sidewalk chalk so kids can still play outside, just on your property. Classic games like hopscotch and tic-tac-toe are fun and easy to create; up the ante by drawing cool caricatures or playing Pictionary with chalk. Kids can also practice spelling or math by writing words and equations on the ground. Best of all, cleanup is unnecessary since a rainy day can "wash" the designs away. Of course, kids will need to wash their hands after. $6.99 for 48 count. Available at crayola.com and retailers nationwide.
Dance the day away
Kids still need daily physical activity so let them teach you how to do a new dance — or choreograph your own. Make it memorable by recording it on your phone or contacting family and friends via FaceTime, WhatsApp or Skype so they can see your fancy footwork from afar — but in real-time.
Instead of scrolling through your social media feed, create a scrapbook using family photos, notes and more. In addition to older photos — you know, the ones that have been in boxes for eons — consider searching your phone's photo gallery for newer photos to print and add to the collection. Tell stories and encourage kids to jot down words to accompany each picture. Embellish with colorful designs and birthday cards or get creative by pressing flowers on a few pages or drawing hand outlines. Like a height chart, you and your kids can keep track of their growth, one hand at a time. Similarly, a vision board party with your children can give them something to look forward to over the coming weeks and months. Clip pictures from magazines or websites, and jazz it up with stickers and vibrant drawings, then post on door or wall. Scrapbooks and art supplies can be ordered online from Michael's. Prices vary. michaels.com.
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