The coronavirus has us all freaked out. Rightfully so! If you have kids at home, the worry is higher. That is why I have decided to write this coronavirus activities for kids post.
I want to keep them safe, but they cannot be the boys in the plastic bubbles. So lies the paradox:
Make wise choices for how you spend time with them and in the activities you let them partake in.
The choices can be slim, but now is the time to make some chicken salad out of chicken…
So what are some coronavirus activities for kids?
Even when we are all on a lockdown of some sort, there are still things to do with kids. The trick is to be creative, flexible, and mindful of their surroundings. So this coronavirus activities for kids list is going to include the things I do with my own kids.
If you are someone that is now working from home your coronavirus activities for kids choices may have limits. I am lucky enough to work at something that allows me flexibility with my time.
So as part of this coronavirus activities for kids guide know that I am not doing something with my kids constantly. I do spend time working and at that time they may have to fend for themselves.
So I think there are three segments of time in our daily routine:
- We are doing kids activities together
- I am working and I am guiding them in their homeschooling at the same time
- I am working or doing something I need to get done while they spend time doing something on their own
Each of these times presents challenges but also opportunities. One positive from this entire experience is the amount of time I get with my kids. When the kids are in school, we are in a routine. Weekday routines and weekend routines. Then summer comes and there is an entirely new schedule.
This time is most certainly the new normal. The thing is, despite my worry about the world around us, I am really loving this time in many ways.
Some of the Varied Coronavirus Activities for Kids
I outlined the three different types of time we spend. There are some others like when it is time to eat breakfast or brush our teeth.
I omitted these because they happened during “normal” times. I want to focus this post of coronavirus activities for kids.
I try to be very flexible these days. I do not want to stick to some arbitrary daily schedule. Even though I live in Southern California, we have been getting quite a bit of rain lately. So if the weather is clear in the morning, I take them outside.
Anything we have planned inside we can do anytime. So if the weather is only going to be good for part of the day, get outside and do coronavirus activities for kids when the sun is shining.
I combine their schoolwork with my work because while I give them a task, I can get some stuff done. Then I can stop what I am doing to manage their progress.
There are times when I need to get stuff done and they are on their own. This used to happen before as well. There are plenty of things they can do to keep them occupied. The problem is that movies, youtube and video games can be a bit mindless. So best to keep time spent doing this reasonable.
There is no doubt this will increase if they are home 24/7. So I look at it as more of a percentage than an actual time spent. So maybe shoot for a certain percentage of time during the day letting them have their mental “junk food.”
The Outside Stuff
This is the best stuff but also the trickiest. I have written reviews about places like Rockin’ Jump that they love going. Those are out.
I have also written about parks in San Diego. These are better than an indoor spot but they still need a little planning.
Let’s face it, anything outside the bubble of your home is a risk. Heck if the infection has hit any member of your family, your home is now a risk.
There are several parks that I love. I am not going to stop taking the kids there. The latest guidance seems to be no more than 10 people in one spot. I am not sure how this applies to kids.
Kids do not get social distancing. They put their hands on everything (including each other). They touch their faces all the time.
I am always telling my kids to keep their hands to themselves. I tell them to tell others that as well. If some kid will not play by the rules, get away.
I am not going to leave it to them alone. In a perfect world, there are no other kids in the park. If there are, get a sense of how easy it will be for them to keep their distance.
I have read that you should go to the park but stay off playground equipment. I do not think the fear is in getting the virus from the equipment. I think the issue is having kids in close proximity to each other.
So if I see this is being compromised I pull the plug. Naturally, I am loaded with little hand sanitizer bottles. I am regularly cleaning the kid’s hands.
Make no mistake, there is a risk in this behavior. Again it is about managing that risk as best you can with coronavirus activities for kids.
Live update: while I was typing this, the state of California ordered everyone to stay at home. If you are still somewhere that it is OK to go to a park, by all means, go but just stay safe.
Something that we have done a ton of is rollerblading. We live in an apartment complex so this is easy to do around where we live. Pretty win-win endeavor. We can keep our distance and still be outside.
It is great exercise for the kids (and for me). We race, we do jumps, we have fun. This may be our best and least risky outdoor activity.
My youngest loves to hit. I have a bunch of foam baseballs and he has a Wiffle bat. He will hit all day. When the hitting is complete, it is time to start throwing him flyballs to catch. Another example of great exercise, fresh air, and social distancing.
You get the idea
Get outside and keep your distance. I could most likely wait for this whole thing out inside on my patio in the sun. I have a stationary bike at home to exercise. I work from home and if I can keep getting food delivered I am all set.
Kids are a different story. They need to get out and run around. They need the exercise and the variety of activities. There may be a day where this gets worse and I am forced to keep them inside all the time. Until then I will manage the risk/reward ratio for all of us with our coronavirus activities for kids.
Coronavirus Activities For Kids: The Inside Stuff
One of our favorite pastimes is the card game Uno. This is a great game for kids my age because it is simple numbers and colors. Even with that, it is still a game of strategy. My kids seem to be picking that part of it very quickly.
Another pastime for us is shooting hockey balls at our hockey net. There is always the chance a window could be broken but so far so good. There is also the chance of injury, mostly to me. I took a slap shot right in the ankle yesterday. Ouch! Broken bones heal and chicks dig scars, eh?
As with the outdoor stuff, you get the idea. Find any type of fun activities you can do together. It will keep them from getting bored. It is also very therapeutic for adults during trying times.
While this may seem to be one of the tougher ones to get kids to do, it is doable. I will be the first to admit we are not doing this for hours on end. When kids are in school, they are there for 7 hours. There is time for recess and lunch, so it is not all learning time. There is no getting around it. I am not doing as much teaching.
Do not focus on that. My kids are in pre-K and Kindergarten. So it is not like I have high school seniors. Kids that are worrying about what is going to happen with their potential trips to college.
I give some time on ABC Mouse doing the learning path exercises. My oldest also has a good lesson plan from his teacher. So in all, they are doing about 1 hour per day of “school” work. I do not focus on the time spent. I focus on progress in these particular coronavirus activities for kids.
To see the silver lining in this is easy. I never got to see this when they went to school. I saw the end result. Now I see the process. It is fantastic to see what they are learning put into action.
I have no idea what this will mean for their education when they get back to school. It would seem all kids are in the same boat. All I can do is do my best. Same with them and we will see what we see down the road.
Coronavirus Activities For Kids When They Are Left on Their Own
There are the times I am doing something else, and they do their own thing. As an example, as I type this, both of my kids are playing Minecraft. Make no mistake this is a video game. It’s benefits to them are debatable.
The positive is that there is a lot of problems solving involved. The same holds true for when they watch YouTube for Kids. There can be some mindless stuff. I have caught them watching videos in other languages sometimes. I doubt that I can do anything but help them.
The point is, in this challenging time, you may need to do things that are to your benefit. That does make you a bad parent. In these trying times, we all need to adapt to a new way of life.
Maybe the thing you need to do is work to pay the bills. That helps all of you! Perhaps you just want to spend one-hour watching mindless television. In a woods where there is so much doom and gloom on TV, this is perfectly acceptable.
Do Not Beat Yourself Up
I’m guessing this is the most significant life challenge we are ever going to face. Trying to raise kids is tough even in the best of times.
Now more than ever, keep your kids happy, healthy, and safe when finding coronavirus activities for kids. Do the same for yourself. Let’s all strive to help and take care of each other, even those we do not know. See the positives in the amount of time you are getting with your kids. Stay patient, stay positive, and stay safe. safe.