Preparing for Isolation with Small Children
Although the schools and nurseries are currently still open, many of you with younger children will have noticed the quick closure of many local Mum and Baby groups, baby classes and playgroups. We are being advised to stay at home unless it is necessary to go out and get food supplies. Lots with symptoms will now have to look to self-isolate, including pregnant Mum’s who may also have other children to care for too.
My promise to you is at this time is this…I will provide you with as much useful content as I possibly can whilst also looking after my two boys at home too. I spent many years looking after babies and toddlers in other peoples homes and we had many a day where we couldn’t leave the house due to illnesses (chicken pox etc), so here are just some of the many tips I will be sharing with you over the coming weeks;
First and foremost, create a routine for your day. When a child has structure they feel more secure. When a parent has structure – you will feel less overwhelmed and will be able to get through the day so much more easily. See my stories later on today for more on this!
Think now about reducing the toys your toddler has available to them by half. Put them into categories and boxes and move some so that they are not accessible. If we are in lockdown for weeks on end, “old toys” that have been hidden for a few weeks will sudden become very exciting to them again.
Consider using each space in your home as a different activity corner. The bathroom can be for water play, the living space as a play area and the kitchen could be for arts and crafts. You can start calling these rooms by those names and moving between them to do activities will help your child feel as though they are going somewhere “different” each time.
Buy supplies…we don’t need to go overboard, but some basic crafting paper, glue, sequins and stickers may prove very useful in the weeks to come! Also think about playdough and other activities too.
Remember that you can still get out for walks as long as you are at a safe distance from other people – so a daily or twice daily walk will be a lifesaver for long days stuck at home. Create games and treasure hunts whilst out and about, for example “Going on a Bear Hunt” or “Stick Finding” so that walks do not become boring as they may well be your child’s only our of house activity once nurseries close.
IF you have outside space, then get searching on local second hand sites for outdoor play stuff. An old scooter, plastic slide and a car to ride in – something like this will turn outdoor play into a much more exciting activity, particularly if you only have a small patch of garden like lots of us in London do.
And finally – remember to look after yourself too! Schedule in some time each day where your child either “free plays” or even just watches TV, so that you can have at least 30 minutes rest. Put your feet up, start reading a book or do some emails – but make sure that you prioritise yourself too – after all you will be their guiding light in the coming weeks.
I have so many other ideas for you, but I will leave this here for now….watch this space, and stay safe. Love and Healthy Wishes to you all.