You could also read or give just the written text and ask your kids to illustrate then share the picture book and consider different interpretations of the book. Alternatively, you could just share the illustrations and ask them to write or tell you the story then share the story and consider different interpretations.
The Mysteries of Harris Burdick by Chris Van Allsburg is a fantastic picture book for working with any age group. It is a collection of incredible images with the title and first line of the story that goes with the image. There is also a wonderful collection of stories written by authors such as Stephen King in response to the images (all suitable for mid primary up) which are fabulous to explore after responding to consider possibilities of stories and interpretations.
Below are just a few examples of the many fabulous podcasts out there.
There is an ever expanding, seemingly endless supply of blogs and websites offering all sorts of art, craft, science, and everything else. Here are a few examples:
Your kids will most likely have introduced you to the time wasting capacity of YouTube through the sounds of bacon sizzling and goodness knows what else. There is also a wealth of material to draw on for learning at home. Mark Rober is a great place to start, he is ex-NASA and offers a new video every month where he sets a challenge, researches and builds. It is a brilliant launchpad for science/engineering projects.
Ask your kids to teach you something or create an activity for the family to come together. We all need to be creative about being active, hand it over to the kids to come up with new ways each day for the family to be active, start them off with a dance challenge, then let them create an obstacle course around the house, and then watch their creativity take off each day as they find new ways to make us adults match their energy and flexibility.
It looks like we could be living this way for some time so some subscriptions might be worth considering. Here are a few:
There is something about being at home that makes us all want to eat more and kids can vacuum up the entire fridge before morning tea. Some tips to deal with this:
Here is an easy recipe that every age group loves.
Method: Combine, press into lined lamington tray, bake at 150 degrees for 25-30 minutes.
Note: You can swap out the coconut, sultanas and choc chips for three cups of whatever you like (dried fruit, nuts, seeds etc.)
This is an incredibly uncertain, disorientating time that is scary and overwhelming for us all. Children and young people will need reassurance, protection from the bombardment of media and nurturance. Anxiety may show in avoidance, anger, disengagement. Watch for unusual behaviours and look for what is behind the behaviour.
Responding to a child’s anger by snuggling up to read a book or watch a movie together might not be what you normally do in your family, though it might be exactly what the feelings behind the behaviour at this time need. That might also require pulling back on expectations such as jobs around the house.
Their refusal may well be a sign of anxiety and an attempt to seek some control over their world that looks so very out of control. It might mean we step back in to do things that our children have been able to do for themselves for quite some time. It won’t be forever, it is what they need now.
It might also mean that we need to ‘Plan C’ some expectations. ‘Plan C’ is where we don’t opt for traditional behaviour management of reward or punish, and we don’t opt for exploring the behaviour to resolve it collaboratively, we recognise that it is beyond working with for now and is for later. That might mean a missed shower or tooth brushing, it might mean the schoolwork sent home is left aside for a day. It is about recognising what is possible at that moment and what is the greater goal: safety and security as a family.
Here are some tips to help support children:
The Red Cross has prepared a resource on Talking to children and young people about COVID-19. You can also use this fabulous picture book from Mindheart that explains the virus well.
Young adults can process news differently than children. They can internalise their feelings and it is not always obvious how they are feeling. Here are some resources and information to help support young adults.