Tell Us About Your Best Tips for Parenting in a Pandemic
Have we reached the point of the coronavirus crisis where we are really starting to deal a little better with pandemic parenting? Many of us have been doing this for several weeks now and have seriously gone through many, if not all, stages of grief over what our daily lives have become. And yet we do what parents always do – we find a way to make it work. We live through another day, and sometimes we even find a little trick on our way.
What works for one parent and one child may not work for another. But if we lump a bunch of tips and tricks into one big heap, we’re all likely to find something new to try. So, I started by asking our Offspring Facebook group : What are the best pandemic parenting hackers you have so far? And the answers came quickly and furiously. Here are my favorites:
- “If you say, ‘ Come here, children, we need to do your homework ,’ they will leave you alone for at least two hours.” (Lee)
- “Even before a pandemic, everyone has an afternoon’s rest (I don’t need to sleep, I don’t care) when they are alone for 90-120 minutes. This was due to the fact that each of our children stopped dozing. ” (Michelle)
- “ The Easter egg hunt isn’t just about Easter . We stuck animal crackers (kids’ favorites) into plastic eggs and hid them all over the house. Earns us at least 20 minutes of time. ” (Presi)
- “We asked each of the children to build their own corner where no one would disturb them. Blankets, pillows, stuffed animals, books, whatever. We have a small place (my youngest’s corner is in my closet), but that way everyone has a place to go when they want to be left alone. Except for the parents, of course. (Julie)
- “One of my biggest break-the-day tricks for kids is when they take a bath or shower in the middle of the day . It refreshes everyone and makes the screen break. “(Jackie)
- “We are passing by the houses of his friends . We stay in the car. Friends stay in the yard. They talk / shout at each other and show toys. ” (Marian)
- “We used the Peg + Cat series to teach a 5-year-old the concept of time, and then asked Alexa to set timers for how long they needed to do something without an adult. They can ask her how much time is left, get a clear indicator and promise that they will soon grab our attention. ” (Jenn)
- “ We do normal things in unusual places – we had picnics on the lawn, we checked all the markers on the terrace (on paper), ate in the lobby, and read on the stairs. This little activity makes a lot of difference. ” (Carrie)
- “If you need to take your child to the grocery store (I know don’t, but if you have to) … have the child carry his most precious toy, which you would never allow him to take out of the house. Checking if they are holding the toy is more effective than “stop touching it.” Also, my child decided that if we wear masks in the store, we must be sneaking, so everything on stage in a whisper helps make him stupid. ” (Michael)
- “My 6 year old daughter has a tendency to turn me off, so I started whispering to get her attention . She thinks I’m sharing a secret. ” (Katie)
And finally, one of my favorites is the trick with which two parents in our group are consistently successful … allowing them to mow with safety shears.
“Yesterday my kids cut the grass with baby scissors for MORE than 40 minutes and asked to do it again today,” says group member Carrie.
See, that’s what I’m talking about. These are the ideas we need right now.
My personal favorite hack I’ve used so far? Bicycles ride with friends – on different sides of the street. One child remains on one side, followed by a parent. The other child remains on the other side, followed by the parent. They can ride together, shout at each other across the street, and even “race” so that parents or children never come within six feet of each other.
I know you have it too. So tell us in the comments: what are your best pandemic parenting hacks so far?