Look at how good and pleasing it is when families live together as one! – Psalms 133:1 CEB version
As we wait at home for the situation of the lockdown to pass, here are a few activities to do with the children. These are mainly for younger children, however, as a mum of 2 teenagers and a 10 yr old (who acts 19), I tend to adjust some of these activities to suit each child.
Remember, stay safe, preoccupied, obey the rules set by the government in your country of residence and feed on the good news – God’s word.
- Talk, talk and talk – and when you do, maintain eye contact, put your phone aside and give your child your full attention. This is the time to be intentional about bonding. Talk about subjects and issues that your children are interested in. I am started discussing football which was never the case before lockdown, however, I am careful not to support any club because the boys support different teams (yes, I’m a MOB – mum of boys).
- Read the Bible together, daily – Pour the scriptures into your children. Reading the Bible together is a good way to ensure they know God’s word. A memory Bible verse a week is also a fun way to learn God’s word. As a family, we try our best to read the scriptures every night during our family devotion, just before bedtime. We also pick a day when the children teach us the Word. To be fair, each child is given a week’s notice to prepare. This way, they are able to search, read and interpret the Bible themselves.
- Learn something together – This could be a language, baking, cooking etc. Plan for it and make it fun. In the last couple of weeks, I have created time to build a wooden plane with my 10-year-old. It took about 3 hours of my time but I had planned for it. We talked and laughed a lot during this learning activity. Even when I got tired, I kept reminding myself that it was a good way to bond (see the picture of the wooden plane below).
- Create an activity timetable – This is helpful for you to plan ahead and prepare. It also helps us as mums to use time wisely and not take on too much. You see, apart from the plane, mentioned earlier, we (son and I) also planned to bake a cake with different coloured layers. I do bake but this is not my strength so off to the shop I went to get a pack of cake mix. It was a very fun activity and we laughed so hard when the cake looked nothing like the picture on the pack. I’m sure you’d laugh too when you see it (see the picture of our funny looking cake below). It was also a learning activity especially with the different measurements required.
- Exercise together – Run around the garden, take a walk down your street, have a dance session indoors and make good use of exercise channels on Youtube. Again, make sure you plan for this and make it fun. For younger children, you can do your exercise using the theme tune from their favourite TV cartoon.
- Create and play life skills bingo together – Make one together and help your child complete it. See the example below.
- Schedule intermittent ‘no social media/no games console/no iPad’ days – You can start off with a few hours a day and increase as you feel comfortable. Remember the rules apply to parents too.
- Plan indoor camping – I love doing this with my boys and it costs absolutely nothing. All you need to do is to take your duvets, bedsheets and pillows to your front room/living room/parlour, set it up, select a family movie and watch it until you all fall asleep.
- Play age-appropriate board games – No game console but just traditional games to foster love and harmony. You can also select a set day to do this. Ours is usually on Sunday night and we call it Family Fun Night.
- Have a pyjama day – A day for all the family to stay in your pyjamas all day. With the lockdown, this can be done any day as long as Mum or Dad don’t need to attend any work meetings.
I hope you found this useful.
The Stress Free Mum.