The American Academy of Pediatrics is very concerned about the health and wellbeing of kids at home with stressed out and fearful parents in uncertain times. The risk of abuse is raised, here is some advice on how best to deal with it:
1. Prevent boredom: Keep changing things up during these uncertain times. See my top ten list of things to do with your kids during quarantine.
2. Address fears: Kids do not always understand; or are they able to put their fears into words. They often express fear with bad behavior.
3. Use time outs: Sometimes time out is more necessary for the parent than the child
4. Redirect bad behavior: As siblings are fighting, instead of yelling, try and redirect them into a positive behavior. Art, dance, singing and other right-brained activities are good options.
5. Know when not to respond: It is important to pick your battles.
6. Praise success: We all do better with positive feedback than negative
7. Allow time for individual attention: Be sure to spend uninterrupted, undistracted time.
8. Avoid physical punishment: This is a bad time to respond to stress by hitting.
9. Take care of yourself: Make sure that you are getting enough sleep, eating right, and exercising. It is difficult to take care of your kids if you are unwell.
10. Remember to take a breath: count to ten, clear your mind, it’s not as bad as it seems
And from Parade magazine, top ten things to do with your kids to avoid boredom:
1. Make a cardboard (use those empty Amazon boxes) or a blanket fort.
2. Set up a treasure hunt
3. Watch the Beluga Whales at the Georgia Aquarium (www.georgiaaquarium.org) and click on webcams at the top)
4. Read at home Bingo
5. E-visit the Louvre art gallery in Paris, France (www.louvre.fr/en?visites-en-ligne)
6. Bake together
7. Watch the Cincinnati Zoo live stream (cincinnatizoo.org/home-safari-resources)
8. Have an indoor picnic
9. Train the dog to do tricks
10. Make elephant toothpaste (scientificamerican.com/article/make-elephant-toothpaste)