Self-isolation as a concept is still young, and we’re all still adjusting to the new normal. We likely still have some time to fill before things go back to the way they were. In the meantime, these are tough times, especially for parents who have kids home from school for the foreseeable future. And kids—they’re hard to keep cooped up for long. If you’re looking for new ways to keep the boredom at bay, here are seven easy things you can do to keep your kids occupied—minimal resources required.
Make your own rock candy
It doesn’t take a scientist to know that kids like sugar, so they may be in on this experiment if you tell them they get to eat the product. It’ll take about a week until your rock candy is fully formed, but the payoff is sweet. Also—bonus educational element—it can help kids understand different solutions and states of matter.
Learn to code
Did someone say a fun, productive way to have guilt-free screen time? It’s every parent’s dream. Codecademy offers over 180 hours of free coding exercises and tutorials. And bonus, they might be able to build you a website by the end of it. Take that, Squarespace.
Visit the Cincinnati Zoo
A virtual trip the zoo! The Cincinnati Zoo, home to the incomparable Fiona, is offering daily Home Safaris weekdays at 3 p.m. on Facebook Live. Each safari features a new animal and an activity viewers can do at home.
Spark imagination with hockey time travel
Author Kerry MacGregor is offering readings on YouTube of The Ice Chips, the series she co-authored with her father, long-time CL vet, Roy MacGregor. The books are about a hockey team that is able to travel through space and time because their rink is extra special (The Ice Chips is aimed at kids 6 to 8).
If you had a March Break trip that had to be cancelled, this is the perfect workaround. Museums around the world are offering virtual tours of their collections, including the Louvre, the British Museum, the National Museum for Contemporary Art in Seoul, and the Van Gogh Museum. Technology is so cool.
Downloadable colouring pages and activity sheets
The shapes are already there, you just have to colour them. Perfect for kids and adults. (Remember adult colouring books? We know you love to colour, don’t lie.)
And when in doubt…
A colander and pipe cleaners
You don’t have to be a hero.
PSA for other parents of smalls: in one of the many round-ups of ideas to keep kids busy, I saw one that said “a colander and pipe cleaners. Don’t ask, just trust me.” Checks out, ate up a solid mesmerized hour this morning.
— Shannon Proudfoot (@sproudfoot) March 18, 2020