We all understand how crucial it is to keep apart from other households during this pandemic, however the physical distance from friends and family is enormously difficult for children to cope with.
The COVID-19 restrictions have put a stop to playing with friends, seeing grandparents and cousins, sleepovers and hobbies. This has had an impact on our children’s mental health and left them longing for social interaction.
To help your child stay connected with family and friends during lockdown, here are some great ideas from an Independent School in Guildford…
Online video calls are an ideal way for children to keep in contact with others whilst staying home. Services like Zoom, FaceTime and WhatsApp, can all be used to safely communicate with family and friends. If your child is too young to have their own phone or tablet, you could arrange the video call with other parents. This will allow your child to have a virtual play date and have some social interaction with other children.
You may not wish to encourage your child to play video games, however they do offer some communication benefits to children. Certain games allow your child to play with friends online. This could be used as a weekend treat (perhaps as an incentive to complete their homework) and it will provide a fun way for your child to interact with their friends.
Even though we may not be able to go to the cinema or watch a film with friends, your children can still share a movie night online. Netflix Party is a new way to watch movies and shows with your friends virtually. Netflix Party synchronises video playback, so you can all watch along at the same time; PLUS it adds a group chat feature so that everyone can share their reactions.
Post a surprise
Children love receiving a letter or parcel in the post, so help your child to make a friend smile by posting a thoughtful gift. Perhaps you could encourage your child to practice writing with a letter to a friend or get out your craft supplies and make them a special hand-made card.