With families in lockdown due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, you may be wondering how to keep your children occupied and how to help them learn as schools are closed.
Many parents across the country are under tremendous stress at present as they do their best to cope with restless, bored and emotional children who are understandably finding it tough without a regular structure to their weekly routine.
Courtesy of North Lanarkshire Third Sector Children and Families Network, in this feature Cumbernauld Family Hub provides some bespoke activity resources for families in the areas of cookery, dance, music, games, outdoor activities, science and arts and crafts.
The resources are designed to be simple, flexible and suitable for undertaking at home in a family setting. Mary McNeil, Development Manager at Cornerstone House Centre, commented:
“It’s only too understandable that may you feel like you’re trapped in the house as a family and don’t know what to do to keep everyone busy and coping as well as can be expected.
“Whether you have toddlers, younger children or teenagers, it is not easy to keep the whole family busy in a healthy way at the best of times let alone during an unprecedented period of being asked to stay indoors.
“With the schools closed, parents will want to ensure that younger members of the family are also learning while they are keeping busy.
“It’s important for all family members to look after their physical and mental health at this challenging time, and striving to keep active through doing positive things each day can be an excellent approach to take.
“To give you some ideas, the below resources provide imaginative guidance for parents and children to keep busy in an educational, meaningful and healthy way whilst quarantining at home over the next few weeks.
“We have also provided some tips to help to help family members who may be experiencing anxiety or stress at this time.”
FREE ACTIVITY RESOURCES FOR CUMBERNAULD FAMILIES DURING LOCKDOWN
Click on each of the below resources individually to download, and follow or adapt the instructions as you see fit for your own family purposes:
CUMBERNAULD FAMILY HUB TIPS FOR MANAGING ANXIETY
During these uncertain times, it can be very daunting and worrying for parents and children. With daily updates and briefings in the news, it is easy to feel anxious, as this is unknown territory.
One thing to remember is that it is very natural to be feeling anxious and worried about the coronavirus crisis, as it is not something we have experienced before. It can be difficult having to stay strong for your children when you too are looking for support. If your children are feeling anxious and you want to speak to them about their feelings, using social stories can be helpful.
Social stories are visual prompts that tell a story specific to identified needs. Cumbernauld families may find it useful to download this social story from ELSA Support. Reassure your child as much as possible to put their trust in you as their parent and that as a family, you will get through this.
For parents and guardians, it can be really hard not being able to go out and about and the feeling of isolation can be immense and challenging. Some parents might find it helpful to reach out to their support network online and perhaps start up a group video chat or Zoom call once a day to minimise feeling alone.
Others things worth considering include virtual play dates and online coffee breaks with friends and family. There are lots of great web community get-togethers happening at the moment. Contact Cumbernauld Family Hub to find out more about specific activities local to the Cumbernauld area.
Here are 10 simple tips that Cumbernauld families may find helpful for managing anxiety and stress during coronavirus restrictions:
Limit news or social media coverage as there is a lot of information and it can be overwhelming
Connect with your friends and loved ones using video messaging, texting and phone calls
Add self-care into your daily routine, whether it be a meditation, cooking or whatever you find relaxing
Focus on your emotional and mental health and if you are feeling low, reach out for support
Keep busy during quarantine, maybe through starting a new hobby, making something or even decluttering
Share your coping skills with others, including your children
Encourage your kids to talk about their worries so they are not bottling things up
Create a healthy routine that works for your whole family and allow flexibility when needed
Incorporate a form of exercise you enjoy as part of your daily or weekly structure, as this can be positive for both physical and mental health
If you enjoy cooking, get in the kitchen and experiment with the ingredients you have.
Meanwhile, Cumbernauld Family Hub is providing a free helpline for parents, guardians, kinship carers and children in need of assistance at this time. This can be accessed by telephoning 07940 569527 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.