Tips and Advice - How to interact with your kids during uncertain times
Renee Lighton: “I believe that never before have parents needed to lead with connection, clarity, creativity and kindness and no one can tell us what to do in this time because it's a FIRST for us all.”
It’s important that we; as caregivers, as parents, need check in with our “What's Inside Now”.
Take a few minutes and REFLECT on how you are feeling. Name the feelings, label them. When you as the adult feel in charge of your emotions, talk to your children in ways that encourage a growth mindset - eg Even though this is scary, what I know is that we will always take care of one another. What I know is that we will do what it takes to be a healthy family. Then ask your children for ideas to do just that. Get them involved.
A few suggestions:
- It would be wise to create a daily routine roster. Include story time, exercises, games, drawing, even laptop time, etc.
- Be aware of creating more LAP time and not too much LAPTOP time. Use a timer - let's watch TV for 30 minutes. When the timer goes off, we are going to read a book/play a board game.
- Less SCREEN time, more ME time. Encourage them to keep a journal.
- Find the balance. Check in and review your days, weeks and adapt where necessary.
- Our ME, includes our mental and emotional make sure you are taking care of your ME so you can support the WE.
- Deciding to be fully flexible and adaptable in the weeks ahead of long days of staying inside with limited physical contact, no school or play groups and consciously choosing to embrace a learning though play attitude, is wise.
- Remember practice makespermanent - GET PRACTICING as this will give our children confidence that this too will pass and they will know that we will do whatever it takes to keep them safe.
- It would be wise for parents and teachers to promote an attitude of gratitude.
- A simple way to play in a different way! You may like to play this game: Use printed media advertisements to play the 'I spy with my little eye' game with your child. “I spy something on this page that is white. You drink it. Cats love it. I keep it in the fridge. What is it?”
- You can also use the Tea4Kidz cards to play. "I spy an animal who loves bananas, has a long tail and likes to swing in trees? What is it?
- A variation on this game is - “I spy with my little eye, something that I am grateful for.” Everyone in the family, the class, takes time to think about what they have to be grateful for today. Write it down. Have a family/class wall-of-gratitude. Read often and add to the list as and when you choose.