“People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Maya Angelou
The quote above should serve as an everyday reminder to families during these tough months of lockdown, social distancing and being trapped at home. Covid-19 has thrown at us, a harsh reality that no one has ever experienced before.
For most young children, their world has changed overnight and a lot of them are unable express their anguish. Not being able to venture outdoors and meet their friends, breaking out of their routine of attending school and extracurricular activities, is bound to create havoc in their minds. As parents, we might all be inclined to indulge in a minute by minute productive schedule for our children, however it is of utmost importance that we place their mental well-being above all else.
What our children need right now is to feel comforted, loved and protected and it is imperative that we tear up our idea of structured schedules and make room for the out of ordinary.
Here’s a fun list of how you as a family can make memories together while being locked in:
Bake: Cookies, muffins, tea cakes to the rescue. A little bit of sugar does no harm!
Paint and DIY science experiments: The internet is filled with wonderful resources that cater to every age, group and skillset. It’s time to get nutty!
Board games: A fun way to bond with the family while acquiring some new skills along the way.
Watch movies: Throw in some popcorn/chips/ice Cream and it makes for an indulgent treat!
Make exercise a fun family activity: Skipping, dancing, climbing stairs, functional training, yoga are all great ways to release endorphins.
Stories and life experiences: Start a book and read it together as a family or get to know each other better by sharing your journey or life experiences with your children.
The Performing Arts: Sing, mime and act. Unleash your fun crazy side!
Get closer to Nature: Watch the sun go down or plant your own herbs. It’s therapeutic. Stay Connected: Zoom Calls/Face time with friends and loved one’s. Sharing a few laughs together is good for the heart.
The final word: How your children felt during this time will stay etched in their memory forever. So tight hugs, snuggling under warm blankets and doing nothing could be just what the doctor ordered.
Stay Safe and Stay Kind!
Author: Tejal Bajla is an early education specialist and the co-founder of Brainsmith, a company that creates innovative tools & toys for young children. She is deeply versed with the latest research on early childhood and parenting. With a degree in Management Studies and varied experience across industries. She is also co-founder of The Mommy Network and a Partner at Toddler’s Den preschool in Mumbai.