Adjusting to the work-from-home lifestyle can be challenging enough, especially if you’re not used to it. But, add kids to the mix and you’ve got yourself a next-level challenge. Between keeping up with school and ensuring their kids are entertained throughout the day, parents are our unsung heroes.
So, how do they do it?
We asked parents at Flipp to share how they have been coping and what they are doing to keep their children occupied and entertained. From our Flipp family to yours, here are some tips to make the most of your family time at home.
Make a Routine
Parents told us that having a routine is critical to keep a sense of normalcy for both parents and children, especially in households with two working parents.
“We’ve been doing shifts of parenting and working,” says Yana, a Data Analytics Manager at Flipp and mother of a 2-year-old.
Daniel, a Staff Engineer at Flipp and father of four, tells us that for older kids, blocks of time for schoolwork and play should also be accounted for as part of the routine. “We block out time each day for school work. We do about 90 minutes of schoolwork a day. That’s about all they can handle.”
Some parents got creative with their lesson plans, leveraging resources like Khan Academy for online lessons, or having their kids write book reports and present them.
“We finish the day with a grade 6 curriculum book that I bought at the beginning of the year at Costco. He has to do four pages or no gaming the next day,” says Cynthia, a Business Partner at Flipp, about her 11-year-old.
In addition to having a routine, Flipp parents emphasized the importance of quality family time and activities to keep their kids entertained. Here are a few ideas they shared:
- Activity books from the dollar store: coloring, mazes, word search, crafting etc.
- Building forts and “make believe” play
- Virtual paint nights with family members
- A picnic dinner over video chat with friends and family
- Helping with household chores like vacuuming, putting dishes away, and cooking
Making sure to break for some fresh air is also a key part of the day. Playing catch in the yard, biking around the neighborhood, and going on walks (while observing social distancing, of course) are great outdoor activities available for families.
Organize a Family Photo Hunt
Parents at Flipp have organized a Family Photo Hunt with other parents around the office, which is a great way to nourish relationships with colleagues in times of social distancing.
Here’s how it works:
Step 1: One parent writes a list of things for the kids to take pictures of and shares it with the other participating families. Types of pictures can include “family together in your home,” or “mom making a silly face”. To get you started, we created a list at the end of this post.
Step 2: Kids take a picture of every item on the list. To encourage creativity, some of the photos can be drawn — it’s also a great way to keep them busy with a craft.
Step 3: Parents share the photos with the other participating families.
Step 4: Enjoy the photos from other families!
What other activities have you started doing with your kids since social distancing? We’d love to know! Leave a comment on Facebook to share your tips with other parents.
Family Photo Hunt Checklist
☐Family together in your home
☐Parent’s silly face
☐Silly selfie with a stuffed animal
☐View from the window
☐Teddy bear picnic
☐Elf on the shelf (a drawing counts if your elf has not appeared!)
☐Most comfy spot
☐Something that smells good
☐Your favourite board game
☐One of Mom’s purses or Dad’s wallet