Parenting has never been easy, but homeschooling, working at home, and the financial instability surrounding COVID-19 have made it much more difficult. It isn’t uncommon at times to feel overwhelmed. However, implementing a few of these tips into your life can help make parenting a little easier during these uncertain times.
Ensuring your child’s health and safety
Follow all safety protocols. Since various places are subject to different regulations, it’s critical to heed the advice of reputable organizations like the CDC, WHO, and the local public health professionals. Public parks, school playgrounds, and parks all are high-contact places where your children can obey your safety instructions. Wearing masks, ensuring social distance, and washing their hands on a regular basis is crucial.
Emphasize the value of hand-washing and cleaning. In 2019, hand washing may have been a dull, repetitive job, but it can now be a life-saving step. Make it a habit for your child to wash his or her hands after going outside or coming into touch with other people.
Stand as an example for your child
Set an example for your child by following your rules. Respect others, follow social distancing, wash your hands regularly and implement other protection precautions, and look out for the vulnerable. Make sure you practice what you preach, so that your child follows too.
Support your children with their online classes and schoolwork
Many of us have found ourselves in the position of a homeschool instructor as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. With so many roles to fulfill, It can sometimes seem like the children are just piling on unneeded responsibilities. However, you must remember that this is a difficult time for children too, and it’s natural for them to withdraw or act in ways they normally wouldn’t. Taking it easy on your children will make you and them feel less stressed. Keep in mind, mental health is just as important as physical health.
Work together with the teacher
Make an effort to communicate with your child’s tutor. Mind that they’re still learning too. If your child’s school is already closed, be frank about what works and what doesn’t with home tutoring. Since your child’s teacher may have a better idea of your child’s academic positives and negatives, they will be able to assist you in developing a more individualized learning plan. It takes a little more hard work, but it can go a long way for your child’s future.
Create a parents’ network
Assemble a community of parents. Discuss ways to keep kids engaged and involved over the phone or through the internet. You can also arrange online study groups or other such activities, which has the added benefit of providing social interaction for your child. Talking other parents about your troubles can also make you feel less alone.
Implement goal-setting and rewards
Set goals and then rejoice when they’re met. With so much taken away from our daily lives, creating a routine and giving children reward will help them stay motivated. Little incentives, such as watching a bit of their favorite series, will inspire them to complete that challenging assignment. Involve the whole family. If you set a few targets and schedule breaks together, your child will start seeing you as a part of their team.
Add a touch of creativity
Make your lessons more imaginative. Experimenting with science or cooking with scales, for example, can be a fun way to bring lessons to life. Also, think about your child’s abilities. Now is a good time to let their creativity flourish and help them understand their likes and dislikes.
Honesty is the best policy
Simply and truthfully respond to questions. If your child has concerns about the pandemic, remember that the best policy is always to be frank. If you don’t want to scare young children, there’s nothing wrong with discussing the importance of safety precautions like social distancing and handwashing.
Prioritize one on one time
Make time for one-on-one conversations. If everyone is always at home with each other, spending one-on-one time with your child is a perfect way to strengthen bonds. Allow your child to pick an activity that both of you will do together.
Gratitude goes a long way
Look for something to be thankful for each day. Share one enjoyable or encouraging thing you did that day with your child each evening, and inspire them to so too. It may be a technical or academic achievement, a home renovation, or something as easy as seeing a stunning sunset. It might sound corny, but acknowledging appreciation and positive interactions will make your family feel better by offering a break from negative thoughts.
Monitor their social media use
Many of us—and our children—rely on the internet to stay in contact with friends and family and keep up with the news in this age of social distancing and isolation. Although social media has many benefits, it can also have a negative impact on your child’s stress and anxiety levels.
You may be tempted to simply restrict your child’s access to their devices if you’re concerned about their social media use. However, this may lead to further issues by isolating your child from their peers at a time when they are most needed. Try to find other ways such as monitoring apps to keep an eye on their online activity and enable them to use social media responsibly.