While we are all staying at home to flatten the curve and keep our own families and others safe, I have quickly found that I am running out of things to do. Baby Emma is 13 months old now (yay for 1 year quarantine birthday) and she is quickly exploring on her own. While we cannot go out and explore, I wanted to find ways to bring things to her so we can explore them together.
Here is a collection of links, ideas, and resources that we have personally used and that many of our therapists are currently using during our continued telehealth services.
- A Web Whiteboard: https://awwapp.com/#
Speech Therapy Goal Ideas
- Language techniques with a middle school-aged child: Watch wordless videos and discuss target language forms.
- Social skills with a high school-aged teen: Watch and analyze videos of social situations together.
- Show & Tell: Favorite toy/object/food/place in home, etc. Talk about why it is their favorite.
- Social Imagination: Look up and share stock images of people and take turns making up scenarios/what they are doing/why they are doing it
- Sing Songs & discuss them (what is your favorite, why, what do you imagine, what do you think it means, etc.).
- Quia online games for speech-language (& other topics)
- App Game – My PlayHome (interactive dollhouse – great free version)
- App & Desktop Game – Plotagon (make “movies” and scenarios – has a great free version)
- Online Game – Make a Face: ABCya – great for discussing emotions, representing people/characters/self
- ABCya Games (variety of online games by grade level and subject/topic)
Occupational Therapy Goal Ideas
- Upload/Share or print/send them letter/word tracing worksheets or color pages
- Draw each other without looking at your paper while you are drawing (Good for laughs)
- Start an indoor garden in small boxes or plastic food containers
- Trying new things to cook/bake or no bake treats
- Make a mural of a family event with crayons, colored pencils, paints, finger paints
- Online game: Drawasaurus
- Make Playdough
- Make slime
- Homemade puppets/puppet show (paper lunch sacks or old socks can be decorated to make quick/easy puppets)
- Watch videos from GoNoodle (free!)
- Practice kids yoga with Youtube channel Cosmic Kids Yoga
- Get outside, Hide and Seek, walk the dog or a neighbor’s dog, go to the park, frisbee, etc.
- Board games, Twister, or physically interactive games
- Movement Mimic: each member takes a turn imitating an animal with movements, other family members mimic the leader
- Freeze Dance: someone plays music, then stops it, everyone freezes
- Mad Mound: empty boxes (can be taped with packing tape for reinforcement), cartons, plastic jugs, crumpled paper balls, nerf balls, foam noodles: stack items as desired into a mound; knock it down by throwing balls, hitting it with a noodle, stomping or kicking, follow up with Scissor Breathing and snipping clouds
- Scissor Breathing: standing or sitting with arms at your sides, pretend there are clouds above you, while taking a deep breath, raise your arms bringing hands together as scissors to snip a piece of the cloud that is just above your head; exhale as arms come back down to your sides, repeat 3 times.
- Musical Chairs/Pillows
- Relaxing Meditations for Kids and Adults https://free.healthjourneys.com/
- The floor is lava: Use furniture or have them lay out books or pillows on the ground for “safe” spaces to stand.
- Animal Walks: found this great video with examples of animal walks
- Make a pillow/blanket fort
Family Bonding & Social-Emotional Needs:
- Read a book while they sit in their parent’s lap or cuddle with a favorite toy.
- Work on a puzzle together as a family; aim to do a little each day.
- Go for a family walk every day
- Create scavenger hunts with different themes (can be used during the family walks!)
- Acting up: Create a family skit about a funny or positive memory/event; kids create a performance for parents/caregivers.
- Connecting – Planting Deep Roots: online match up for children’s penpals (US only)
COVID-19 Resources for Families:
- CDC – https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html
- National Association of School Psychologists – https://www.nasponline.org/resources-and-publications/resources-and-podcasts/school-climate-safety-and-crisis/health-crisis-resources/talking-to-children-about-covid-19-(coronavirus)-a-parent-resource
- National Child Traumatic Stress Network – https://www.nctsn.org/resources/parent-caregiver-guide-to-helping-families-cope-with-the-coronavirus-disease-2019