As parents settle in to becoming homeschool teachers overnight, the challenges they’re facing can certainly feel daunting, especially at a time when most are worried about their health and financial well-being.
This is grandparenting amid the COVID-19 crisis. For my wife and me, becoming grandparents meant a hurried drive across middle America — 1,500 miles in two days. It meant being barred from a hospital visit, then maintaining two weeks of self-isolation in a rented house before we’d eventually be allowed to hold our grandchild or hug his parents.
There are lots of reasons why sleep has become more difficult for your children, but three main ones come to mind: schedule changes, lack of physical activity, and higher levels of anxiety. Our schedules are no longer as consistent as they were. Bedtimes and rise times are often a moving target when there’s no school bus coming. And, homeschooling while juggling work and other responsibilities can make it hard to find the time to help your kids get the kind of physical activity that can help them sleep well at night. Finally, your children may be picking up on your own anxiety and may be asking for a bit more help than is typical to get to sleep at night. What can we do about these issues?
Sheltering in place with your family means more opportunities to share meals, play games, and possibly drive each other a little batty. The extra hours of togetherness are also a good opportunity to collect oral histories. Whether you want to dive into family lore or record a snapshot of life in the era of COVID-19, there are several ways to set yourself up for sympathetic listening and enthusiastic sharing on all sides.
Overnight, I had been handed the one thing I so fiercely desired—time—and yet I was miserable. Social media and unrelenting Ikea commercials featuring happy families thriving in isolation suggested that my feelings were abnormal. I was beginning to agree with them. I needed help.
Being stuck inside with your kids for an indefinite amount of time due to a global pandemic is stressful enough. It’s even worse when those kids can’t stop bickering. For many parents, this is the new reality. Siblings, cooped up and frustrated, are fighting more than they normally might, and nobody can escape.
There are only 12 notes in music, but with them an endless combination of melodies can be created. Music has taken on even bigger role of easing the stress and uncertainty from the COVID-19 pandemic. This goes especially for your kids. And there’s an ideal soundtrack to help kids navigate the feelings about the coronavirus pandemic but also help stir crazy kids chill out.
For the first time in my children’s lives, they are not being rushed to put on shoes or get out the door. There are no scheduled piano lessons or gymnastics classes for which we cannot be late. No standardized tests. No carpools or playdates or summer day-camps that we frantically booked months in advance.
A feelings chart is really any tool that helps a child expand their emotional vocabulary. It helps kids reflect on their feelings and describe them with more precision.