Are your kids complaining that they are BORED and feeling disconnected from their friends? If you are out of ideas, here are five ways to help kids feel connected when they are far away from their traditional social interactions. I recently listed to the On Purpose podcast from Jay Shetty- a former monk who is making wisdom go viral. His episode “3 Ways to Deal With Loneliness & Healthy Social Distancing” talks about how we are all looking for shared experiences, not necessarily physical proximity. Let’s help them strengthen their connections and curb loneliness during this time of change.
Future Entrepreneurs & Philanthropists
Snail mail letters are a lost art that can be revived during this time of distancing. Help kids create their own line of greeting cards, stationery or journals to sell! For each sale, they can send one card to someone in need of cheering up like Cards for Hospitalized Kids or nursing home residents. Now is the time to invest in some crafting materials- we have a Xyron Creative Station and a Glaminator that both jazz up our crafts. I love how Xyron makes the crafting process easier…and it is mess-free. No gooey glue or glitter.
Virtual Connection Bingo
One game that kids of all ages (I am talking 1 to 100) love is Bingo. You can create a Virtual Bingo game for your children and their friends using favorite characters in books or movies, favorite sports figures, hobbies, etc… The site I used was print-bingo.com and I created pdfs of Bingo sheets to send out to friends to be printed.
I then set up a Zoom meeting and called off the cards. Harry Potter Characters, Cubs Players and Frozen characters all made appearances. The winner can receive an emailed certificate or a small virtual iTunes gift card. This will definitely help my kids feel connected to their friends, as well as each other as they help their siblings with the game.
Magic Show or Talent Show
My mom found a book of kids magic tricks and told my children to pick five to perform. They had to read through the book, select their tricks and give her a list of props.
They then practiced and put on a performance for the family! This can be a virtual performance for friends or you can record it and put it on a private YouTube link to share later.
Here is my children’s show:
Sidewalk Chalk Connected Story
If you have friends in the neighborhood, complete a sidewalk chalk story! Each child gets a sidewalk square to write and illustrate their portion of the story. Organize with the other children the order and a time for each participant to add to the story. You can also have each square represent an activity- for example, hop three times or gallop to the next square. This can help kids feel connected because they know that others are taking part in the same experience.
A Kindness Hunt
You can help kids feel connected by encouraging them to help others! Create a Kindness Treasure Hunt complete with a Treasure Map- each spot on the map contains a random act of kindness for them to complete in order to move on to the next clue. Acts of kindness can be as simple as emailing their teacher to let them know how much they are appreciated or making a treat for the family.
Cheers to activities that help kids feel connected during a time when distance is crucial!