OPINION: Shelter-at-home survival tips for parents

How to maintain sanity while social distancing


Homeade crafts are an easy way to keep your child entertained. Crafts like beads and pipe cleaners pictured above can be found at your local craft store. Photo Credit: Ashton Byers

Ashton Byers

Schools closed for nearly 30 million children across the U.S. due to the coronavirus, leaving some parents trying to figure out how to navigate working from home while homeschooling their children. 

That playdate you scheduled? Forget it. Social distancing advises against playdates and playgrounds have been closed.

This leaves parents one option: activities from the comfort of home. 

In need of ideas? As a mother of two, I’ve got you covered: crafts, games, recipes and homeschool resources. 

If you’re looking for something to replace hours on the television, let them get creative with crafts like: painting, coloring and making jewelry. All of these things can be found at your local Walmart. 

I personally am not a fan of giving my children tablets, however it can be used as a learning tool. Here are some online websites that children can visit to help assist with homeschooling: 

When you need to give your kids a break from online learning, it’s time to bring out those old board games you had stashed away and replaced with an iPad. 

Board games are a way to get the whole family involved and give children the opportunity to apply their critical thinking skills while having fun! Some of my favorites include: 

  • Monopoly
  • Candyland
  • Chutes and Ladders
  • Battleship
  • Sorry
  • Trouble
  • Life
  • Operation. 

Card games are also available at a cheaper price, good examples of these include:

  • Go Fish
  • Skip Bo
  • UNO
  • Slapjack
  • War
  • Palace
  • Memory Matching

These are all good ways to keep children engaged using their critical thinking skills. 

Of course, staying at home with your kids during a pandemic simply wouldn’t be complete without snacks. 

Keep it simple and stock up on easy to grab fruits and vegetables, cereal, pasta, rice and bread. 

When it comes to snacks, the best tip I could give to parents is to keep it simple under the shelter-at-home order. My go-to snack is simply making popcorn on the stove and sprinkling it with salt and butter. 

Cutting up your own fruit and vegetables and freezing them is also smart as it keeps them preserved. 

Does your child have a birthday party coming up? Have a birthday party with family and friends at home via video chat options like Skype to maintain social distancing guidelines.

Party games and cake can all be done at home in order for your child to feel special on special day.

These tips and shelter-at-home life hacks for parents will help you get through this uncertain time with ease (hopefully) until school is back in session.