DENTON (UNT), Texas — Children should have a combination of physical, psycho-social and cognitive activities while staying home during the COVID-19 outbreak, according to University of North Texas College of Education Professor Jean Keller, who has instructed teaching students since 1989.
Keller has some suggestions to help families keep children active, engaged and positive while schools are closed. She notes that new resources are becoming available everyday online but the following activities and resources can get parents started:
- Whether inside or outside, make the space safe and enjoy some movement – Simon Says, Scavenger Hunts or Follow the Leader. Older children can lead and organize some activities for younger siblings. Some websites with ideas include:
- Board games, arts and crafts, charades, cards, playing music and cooking are also great options. Another suggestion, if children are old enough, is to give them a digital camera and have them document a few days. Look through the pictures with them and listen to their stories about what they find important about each image. These activities help develop social and emotional skills like communication, cooperation, emotion regulation, empathy, impulse control and social initiation. Some websites with more ideas include:
- There are many ways to learn and grow mentally while at home. Suggestions include reading a new book, playing a new computer game, performing science experiments, solving problems, learning new songs, telling a story and making a video. Some websites with ideas include: