The pandemic has been tough on everyone. If you are a mom with kids at home, you know all too well how difficult it is to keep your kids quarantined at home, safe, and entertained, all while doing many of the things you usually do (and hopefully staying sane). We have some great tips for moms to help you survive the pandemic.
1. Teach Your Kids Good Hygiene Practices
Kids aren't the best at washing their hands, but it's now more critical than ever. Make sure that your children know how to wash their hands with soap and warm water. Remind them to sing "Happy Birthday" twice and to always wash their hands before eating, after using the toilet, and after coming inside the house. Even older kids need to be taught these rules and reminded frequently.
2. Limit Contact in Public
It isn't easy to stay home, but you should try to avoid going out in public as much as possible. Many retailers are now offering order online, pickup in store options so that you can avoid public spaces.
If you do have to go out, keep your family at least six feet away from others and make sure that your children over the age of two wear a mask.
3. Stay Prepared for Distance Learning
Distance learning is one of the top struggles moms are facing, especially as so many schools are deciding to continue distance learning into the fall. As a parent, it can be challenging to navigate the many assignments and online programs your kids are using, not to mention keeping your kids focused during Zoom calls.
Getting organized is the first step to success. Create a binder or online folder for each child. Keep all communications and assignments there. You may also want to create a planner for each child or a master planner color-coded by the child. Designate a time each week to fill out the planner with the following week's tasks. Check the planner each day to make sure you are staying on top of things.
You should also set up a couple of spaces for learning. You will want one area for Zoom meetings. This should be somewhere with few distractions. You also need another place for quiet work. Make sure each spot is stocked with necessary supplies.
4. If a Family Member Gets Sick...
Despite your best efforts, one of your family members may test positive for COVID-19. If this happens, do not panic. Quarantine the member in a bedroom and make sure he or she keeps to one bathroom. Consult your doctor about the necessity of testing for your entire family. You may be told to quarantine for two weeks, regardless.
If your child is sick, you may want to let only one parent care for the sick child so that at least one parent is well to take care of the other children.
5. Keep Your Kids Entertained
Keeping your kids entertained is a tough job even without a pandemic. You probably hear the phrase, "I'm bored" a hundred times a day. You can keep things interesting by coming up with some fun games and activities for your kids to do as a family. You may also want to give your kids a set of tasks to do each day, such as reading a book and unloading the dishwasher to give their days a sense of predictability and rhythm.
If you wind up letting your kids a bit more screen time than normal, give yourself a break. It is okay for your kids to entertain themselves with a screen while they are stuck at home.
6. Make Time for Yourself
You may feel like you never get a second alone, especially with kids home all day. Talk to your spouse and your kids about your much-needed alone time. If you work from home, you may need to remind the other members of your family that you need uninterrupted periods of time each day to finish your work.
7. Be Open and Honest With Your Kids
The pandemic is a new experience for all of us, and it is scary, especially for kids. If your children have heard much of the news, they may have some strong fears about what is going on.
You may be tempted to reassure them with comments like, "You will be fine. You won't get Coronavirus." But the truth is, you don't know. Instead, give your kids the facts and remind them that you will take care of them no matter what.