I never imagined that something like this would be happening in our lifetime, but here we are, living in the middle of a viral outbreak. As a school teacher, I wanted to share some tips and tricks to help you get through these next few weeks. My hope is that these schedules and routines during COVID-19 will help you and your children be more productive and make the most of this time of social distancing.
One benefit of being home and practicing social distancing is the extra time with my girls. Since this is not a a vacation, we are going to try to keep things as normal as possible. I wanted to take the time to share with all of you our schedule and routines during COVID-19 for the next few weeks.
My hope is that it can help you make the most of this time at home with your children. After almost ten years of teaching, I can tell you that children THRIVE when they stick to a routine. Even high school students do better when they know what to expect in a day. That will be my goal for these next few weeks. I want my girls to know what to expect each day. I invite you take a peek inside of our house, go on a virtual tour of our surrounding for the next few weeks, and tackle this uncharted territory with us!
Our Daily Schedule
As I mentioned, I want to keep things as routine as possible during this time of social distancing. Here is some simple schedules and routines during COVID-19 that you can follow with your own children to make the most of these next few weeks.
- Try to wake up between 8 and 9 am. If you get in the habit of sleeping late every morning, you are less likely to be productive during the day.
- Make sure to eat breakfast. It is the most important meal of the day because it kick starts your metabolism. We will eat together every morning to make the most of this extra family time.
- Get Dressed!! I can promise that you will have a more productive day if you put on clothes. Pajamas make you lazy.
- Make up all the beds in the house. I have found that if you get moving, you are also more likely to be productive.
- Start on school work at the same time every day. This is what your children do at school. Try to make home school the same. I would also suggest to have your children do their work at the same place every day. My advice is the kitchen table or a desk. This will help enforce that routine.
- Get some exercise. Go outside, take a walk, shoot the basketball, or even play tag. Do anything to increase their heart rate for at least 30 minutes every day.
- Lunch Time! All that exercising is sure to work up and appetite. I would again suggest to sit down and eat with your kids everyday.
- Rest Time! At our house, Vivi will need a nap after lunch. I am going to encourage Mollie to use that time to practice a skill. Things like dancing, drawing, or coding will be great for her to do while Vivi is resting.
- Read a story together. Reading to your child is the single best thing that you can do for them. At our house we have been reading Harry Potter together. You could also have family DEAR (Drop Everything and Read) time. We recently checked out a ton of books from the library so we will do that some days as well. I will also be going live on my Instagram for Story Time, Monday-Friday.
- Go on a Field Trip. A lot of museums, zoos and aquariums are offering virtual field trips. I will link some below for you to check out.
These are obviously just tips. I encourage you to make a something that works for you and your family. The main thing is to keep a schedule. Remember, children thrive in a routine setting so that is ultimately the goal with this schedule. It does take a village, though, so I have compiled a list of easy resources for you to use. Most of these are free, or are offering free resources due to COVID-19. These will be great when your children have down time or when you just need a moment alone.
- Brain Pop
- ABC Mouse
- Khan Academy
- Math Facts Drills
- Study Island
- Moby Max
- Storyline Online
Need to get out of the house but still want to practice social distancing? No problem! The following places offer great virtual field trips that you can take with your children. To make it even more educational, have them write a few sentences about what they saw and draw a picture to go with it. You can adapt the length of the writing to the age of the child.
Virtual Field Trips
- Georgia Aquarium
- San Diego Zoo
- Yellowstone National Park
- Virtual Farm Tour
- Zoo Atlanta Panda Cam
- Discover Hawaii
- The Louvre
- The Great Wall of China
- Boston Children’s Museum
A Few Tips
My hope for you is that this is an easy transition for you and your kids. If not, take a deep breath and know that you are not alone. Children of all ages feed off of our emotions so if they can sense that we are stressed, chances are, they will be as well. I wanted to leave you with a few classroom management tips that I have learned over the years. Hopefully these help you and your children to adjust better to the changes.
- Limit time on electronics. For instance, since Mollie is only 9, she normally would not have her phone during the school day. I am going to have her stick to the same schedule. She will not be allowed to have her phone until at least 4pm every day.
- Stick to bed time! This will ensure that you have a productive, happy child the next day. It will also help them stay on a schedule for when we return back to school.
- Set alarms! This is something that I do in my own classroom. This will help you stick to that routine. Great things to set alarms for are school work, exercise, lunch, rest, and story time.
- Limit Distractions. Children, especially young children, have a very short attention span. When they are doing their school work, make sure that it is in area that helps them to focus. In front of a television is not ideal.
- Take a deep breath, count to ten, and know that you are not alone! We are all in this together. You have got this!
Hopefully all of this helps to make your day go a little bit smoother. No one is expecting perfection these next few weeks. The goal is simply to have happy and healthy children. If nothing works, take a break and head to Disney! You can take a virtual tour of all of my favorite rides at The Happiest Place on Earth!
Also, I did want to quickly add in few recommendations for my readers without children. These are just some things to help you make the most of your time so you do something besides watch Netflix! I also encourage you all to make your own schedule and routines during COVID-19. It will help to make you much more productive while you are practicing social distancing.
- Deep clean your whole house. You can go about this two different ways:
- One room a day
- One task a day (mop, sweep, dust, etc.)
- Go through all the clothes in your closet. Literally try EVERYTHING on and inspect every piece. Make sure to make keep, sell, and donate piles!
- Read a book! I for one am really looking forward to this!
- Watch all of the Marvel movies in chronological order. I have always wanted to do this! Have any of your ever attempted this?
- Try a new recipe. Just make sure you already have all of the ingredients at home!
- Clean your attic or basement. I mean seriously! Has this EVER been done?
- Work Out! To encourage social distancing, Planet Fitness is offering a series of free “Home Work-Ins.” These will be streamed live on their Facebook page daily. The virtual classes will be 20 minutes or less and will not require any equipment.
- Write some snail mail to your friends and family. Those little letters may mean more to them than you will ever know!
If you have any other recommendations just let me know in the comments below! I would love to add to hear your schedules and routines during COVID-19. Stay safe and healthy my friends!
You have got this!