In these times of self-isolation, many parents find themselves at home with their children, juggling work, schoolwork and home in one space at the same time. There’s a good chance that kids will have some difficulty navigating this new lifestyle and will need your help in understanding how things might be for the next few months.
Being organized is key, says Zara Al-Zaim, coordinator of DIVERSEcity’s IMPACT Parenting Group. To help get the family organized, try creating a visual daily calendar.
You can download this link to our PDF Daily Calendar and print or even use it on your screen (it’s fillable!). Or you can get really creative and make a calendar on a large piece of construction paper or cardboard. Get the kids involved and use different colours and stickers to decorate it. You can make it based on your children’s’ ages and needs.
Children may need help at first in following the schedule, as it takes time to create a routine. However, once it is set up, things will go smoother.
Make sure you are consistent with your routine and follow the schedule. Kids do well with structure, so set specific times in the day for them to follow for bedtime, study time, break time, lunch time, snack time, play time, exercises, TV time, going for walks, household chores, spiritual connection and any other activity important to your family.
If you’re working from home, consider creating another visual schedule that reflects your day and responsibilities. Be sure to place it where your kids can see it. If you are working from home, discuss with your kids when they can interrupt and talk to you. Explain what an emergency situation is and when they can ask you something during work hours. This all depends on children’s ages and maturity levels.