With the pandemic now being recognized having reached the stage of community spread, the need of the hour is to stay indoors as much as possible. Under these circumstances, children find themselves caught between online classes and no way of playing outside, with almost no physical activities to help them stay energized and happy. Parents often feel bad for their children who have been forced to stay indoors for months even though their safety has left with no other option.
Kids are full of energy and it is important to make sure that their energy is channelized in the right direction, helping them to satisfy their blooming curiosity. The COVID-19 situation has not been kind to any of us, but parents need to take care of their children by helping them in their growth. We understand that your role as a parent becomes extremely difficult when you’re already caught up with client calls, online meetings, and demands of the workplace. Psychiatrists practicing in leading Hospitals around the world have stated that this period can be used in a very positive way for your child’s development which will help in increasing the productivity. It is, however, important to squeeze out time for your kids, at the same time.
Most parents turn to gadgets like mobile phone, Play Station, etc to keep their children engaged, which might be of help to distract them but it is of no help in the long run and it can in fact affect the development of your child’s cognitive abilities.
“Every child needs to have physical activity and cognitively stimulating tasks every day,” says Senior Psychologist, Gayathri Rao. Furthermore, it becomes essential to make sure their engagement is “meaningful and productive”.
You may ask, why it is important for activities to be meaningful. Here are few reasons:
1) To aid development: Children learn from their surroundings and from what they observe
2) To develop focus: Concentration is important to understand and reflect what one is doing
3) For communication: Children should know how to express themselves, both in inter-personal relationships, as well as when in a group
4) Physical health: The development of muscles, bones and cognition require enough physical activity
5) For creativity: Childhood is the best time for a child to realize his/her creative interests and develop hobbies
Following are few indoor activities that can help your child learn better and engage meaningfully
a) Painting, drawing or coloring: Let your kids dip their hands in paint or color along lines on a photograph or even draw a shapeless figures; let them be creative as much as possible, as this will allow them to draw their imagination
b) Let them help you: If you’re working in the kitchen, ask them to help you by getting veggies from the refrigerator or have a conversation about fruits, their names and color, along with their importance in nutrition. This will help your child not only learn but will also make them feel that they are being helpful
c) Reading: Read books to them at night and they will immediately be interested to know what happens next. This will develop their listening ability and gradually, they will be willing to read by themselves; they will learn new words and also, improve their speaking skills
d) Indoor games: You can play card games like Uno or those with images and shapes, or even play board games like ludo and chess, if they are not too young, with the fun and interest increasing for children even more, if other family members join in
e) Treasure Hunting: Let them act as a detective and plan a treasure hunt for them, with clues so that they feel happy when they find the hidden objects, making them more keen on indoor activities and make them mindful
Remember, all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. Help your child develop good habits, engage in activities and stay happy. For more such suggestions, you can read more on a variety of available websites.