2020 Mar 20
Due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, government authorities have taken safety measures to curb the transmission of the virus, by closing schools and universities and also by requesting Public and Private sector organisations to allow their employees to work from home. Children are the apple of every parent’s eye and keeping them safe and happy is of utmost importance for every parent. As most working parents are now working from home, you can take this opportunity to look over the physical, mental and social well-being of your children more closely and spend a few extra hours with your kids. Here are a few ways that you can make sure that your kids are healthy and happy, amidst the chaos that we are facing.
1. Teach your children accurate information about the Coronavirus
As we are living in a time where technology is highly advanced and social media is easily accessible through any device, while it comes with a plethora of benefits, it can also easily instil myths, misinformation and fake news in someone, in times of crisis. Most children now are very much exposed to the internet and social media, hence it is important that you teach your children accurate information about the virus, so that they will not be affected by misinformation. Make sure that your children are up to date about the current situation of the country and the precautionary measures that government authorities are taking, to improve the situation. This will ensure that your children will know what to do, in face of an unexpected situation. Accurate information regarding the virus can be obtained by trustworthy websites of organisations like the World Health Organization and Ministry of Health in Sri Lanka.
World Health Organization: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019
Ministry of Health, Sri Lanka: http://www.health.gov.lk/moh_final/english/
2. Teach your children good hygienic practices
Maintaining hygiene is of utmost importance, to minimise the risk of contracting the virus. Teach your children the proper methods of washing their hands with soap and water and that they should make it a practice to wash their hands once every hour. Teach them basic prevention methods like to refrain from touching their face, eyes, mouth and ears without washing their hands and sanitising them properly. Also take the time to make sure to teach your kids to keep their room clean and tidy and to sanitise their belongings that are used frequently, once in a while.
3. Give your children nutritious meals and proper dietary supplements
There are many immunity boosting superfoods that are available to us, as an extra precautionary method, to make sure that your child’s immunity is strong enough to fight the virus. Vegetables like spinach and broccoli, protein rich fish and eggs and fruits like oranges and papaya are rich in nutrients and antioxidants, that are bound to strengthen your child’s immune system. Dietary supplements like multivitamins and omega-3 fish oil, as prescribed by a doctor, is also bound to be beneficial in keeping your children healthy.
4. Take the time to talk to your children and to get to know them better
In times where the hustle is high and you’re struggling to find a work-life balance, you might not be able to talk to your children as much as you’d like. But now that you might be working from home and everyone is encouraged to practice social distancing, you might have the opportunity to take a few hours off your day to talk to your children, how they’re doing in school and disseminate any problems that they have stored within themselves. If children are going through some kind of a struggle and see you working hard all the time, they might refrain from voicing out their concerns, keeping your best interest in mind. Making sure that your child’s mental health stability is positive, is just as important as making sure that they are physically healthy.
5. Make sure that your children are active while at home
To keep your children from drowning in boredom, make sure that they are active around the household. Introduce them to fun card games, board games and other engaging games like Charades and Heads Up, to keep the spirits high and for positive vibes among the family members. Encourage your kids to engage in household chores like cleaning, cooking your child’s favourite meal, baking a yummy dessert and gardening. Allocate some time off your schedule to take part in doing chores with your children, to make it more fun and engaging for them.
6. Keep a schedule to practice work-life balance
Now that working from home is an option for a while, which means that you’ll be able to save time on travelling to and from your workplace, you have the opportunity to work towards achieving work-life balance a little better. Work according to a proper schedule, making sure that you have allocated ample time to rest, for work and to spend time with your family. Have a strict time to disconnect from work in the evening and try your best to finish your duties for the day, within the allocated work hours. As much as it is important to spend time on working towards achieving your career goals, it is equally important to prioritise your family’s needs and your children’s well-being during these trying times as well.
7. Encourage your children to be creative
Letting your child’s imagination and creativity run wild comes with an abundance of benefits in many ways, including positive influence to your child’s mood. Encourage your children to engage in arts and crafts; to draw, paint, write and also learn useful DIY crafts. There are many tutorials on YouTube, that teaches simple DIY crafts that can come in handy during day-to-day situations.
8. Assign a trustworthy guardian to take care of your children in face of an unexpected situation
It’s always better to be safe than sorry. Make sure you assign someone you trust, it can be your parents, a sibling or a friend, to care of your children in face of an unexpected situation. If a family member is ill, or is showing symptoms of the virus, make sure you keep your children away from that family member. Also make sure that the assigned guardian follows proper hygienic practices and is physically and mentally stable to take care of your children. Always be prepared for unexpected situations, to minimise the risk of your children contracting the virus.
They say that being a parent is the hardest job in the world, and this time brings even more concern for all of us. We hope that this article gives you a sense of relief and good ideas, when it comes to taking care of your children. If you know of or practice other methods in keeping your kids safe, healthy and happy, do let us know in the comment section, as it will benefit other parents as well.