Tag Archives: Coronavirus DC Area

Five Things for Today: March 26, 2020

Channeling Frida Kahlo with a fun and reflective art prompt.


1. The National Children’s Museum, which just opened last month, but like most places is now temporarily closed, launched a daily, digital “STEAMwork” Series on their Facebook page. Each day at 2:30pm, talented members of their team feature different STEAM projects, challenges, experiments, and story times for children under 12 and their caregivers.

2. My kids had such a wonderful art teacher in elementary school, and she’s been doing some great prompts on her blog that encourage thoughtfulness and reflection along with creativity. This Frida Kahlo-inspired post is especially fantastic.

3. Kidstir, a company that makes subscription boxes providing cooking inspiration for children, is giving away 15,000 kits to keep the joy of cooking and baking alive as families are affected by the coronavirus. Sign up to get one! (Note: there is a $4 shipping fee so they can support as many families as possible).

4. An instant mood booster.

5. My friend, Shannon, just revived her blog, But I Do Have a Law Degree. Some of you might remember it from several years ago — it was really popular when she was writing regularly. Anyway, she’s super cool, funny, and real and that all comes through in her fantastic writing.

⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️

If you enjoyed this post — found it informative, inspiring, or it just made you smile — please share it!

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Five Things for Today: March 25, 2020


For over 10 years — yes, KFDC recently celebrated a big blogaversary! — I have loved sharing information and inspiration on where to go and what to do with kids in DC. Needless to say, the coronavirus and its broad effects have impacted that. But while I can’t keep you updated on new places to visit or upcoming events and activities around the area, I still want to inform and inspire and help us all navigate this new, bizarre socially distanced world. Since we’re all absorbing so much right now, I’m keeping it small and simple with five daily things. It’ll be a mix of informative, interesting, and fun… links, ideas, maybe even anecdotes, some that are quite useful and others that might just make you smile. Thanks so much for reading KidFriendly DC!

1. In case you missed this on the KFDC Facebook Page, a new service just launched that parents may want to check out as many kids begin distance learning. Capitol Teachers, founded by veteran educators, JoAnn Hill and Liz Kraemer, offers tutoring services, enrichment opportunities, and homeschooling programs to students in grades K-12 throughout the greater DC area. As one of the few tutoring companies in the DC area where all tutors are experienced teachers, Capitol Teachers provides data-driven instruction to meet the diverse needs of individual learners.

2. Lots of kids love earning Junior Ranger badges from National Parks. While they can’t visit them right now, there are some badges that can be earned at home by mail, and this blog post lists all of them.

3. We rarely bake because I’m so bad at it, but yesterday we made Smitten Kitchen’s Salted Caramel Pretzel Blondies, and I gotta say they turned out pretty delicious (albeit after one botched batch of caramel and a burned-now-blistered finger (mine), but worth it).

4. There still is a massive shortage of personal protective equipment for medical professionals battling the coronavirus. Masks are particularly needed right now. If you have some or know anyone who might, perhaps someone with a contracting business, please consider donating to local hospitals. I could help facilitate it for you — see this KFDC post for more information.

5. In case you haven’t yet read about the head of security at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum who has taken over the Twitter account, you have to go check it out now. It’s really the best! (You can also follow on Twitter.)



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Social Distancing Survival Tips for Parents with Toddlers

[Note: These tips are from KFDC contributor, Emily Moise, mom of two little ones. Most of my strategies have been more for school age children, so Emily brings a fresh perspective to this new socially distanced world we’re all still figuring out how to navigate.]
 

If you’re like me, you’re seeing the plethora of virtual events, free online courses, streaming exercise classes, and binge-worthy TV recommendations, and thinking, “If only I didn’t have two toddlers!” Even though many of these offerings are geared towards preschoolers, a screen opens Pandora’s box for my nearly 3-year-old daughter and isn’t doable for my newly 1-year-old son.

Here are my social distancing survival tips for parents and caretakers of kids in the 1-3 range, using minimal or strategic screen time:

Change the scenery. Toddlers physically cannot stay in the house all day. It just ends badly. If it’s nice out and above 40 degrees we get outside (a nursery school rule), at least two times a day. Back yard, front yard, open field, tennis court, or “nature walk.” If stuck indoors, we change up the scenery there as well. Whether that’s making bath time a foam party, setting up a tent, or just moving playtime from room to room.  

FaceTime. This was always part of our little ones’ routine for family in NYC, but now we’ve added friends, more family, and even a whole nursery school class to the mix. Using a smartphone as a phone feels good! Kids get to converse or listen to conversation, see friends they miss, and then we can hang up without them wanting to scroll or watch videos. If your preschool class has yet to schedule a live group chat, encourage them to do it! We used Lifesize.

Hone in on the distraction-proof activities. My child can do puzzle after puzzle only looking up for you to hand her the next one, but give her an easel and paint and she’ll be done, paint spilled in about two minutes. We haven’t given up on painting, but we are really playing up the things that give her laser focus to kill an hour. Tip: Search the Facebook Marketplace for more puzzles, Play-Doh supplies, etc. You won’t have to wait for shipping…just be sure to sanitize well!

Choose your parent-DIY activities wisely. There are so many crafty ideas for toddler activities circulating out there now—but some can take way more time to create than use. I recently discovered @busytoddler on Instagram and her ideas using stickers (like this one) was an aha moment for me. My daughter loves stickers, as in she loves to just peel them off one by one until the sheet is done—five minutes max. With @busytoddler guidance, I’ve since created sheets of words and landscapes for her to match stickers to.

Aim for 45-minute intervals. The majority of those gym and music classes our children cannot attend at the moment are just 45 minutes long. For us, on non-school days we would have one or maybe two classes/open gyms on the schedule. If we can set up one of our social distancing activities and go for 45 minutes, I consider that a win and there is less pressure on the rest of the day. This is a good way to think about digital activities like Cosmic Kids Yoga. You can also try starting an activity with 20 minutes of your own “circle time” using music like this.

Love thy neighborhood walks. When the workday is over, we’re likely strolling through our neighborhood with the little ones in a wagon. We find neighbors out on every block willing to have a 6 foot-separated chat, or giving the kids a friendly wave and smile—much needed, real-life face time! The sidewalk chalk art movement is making these walks even more cheerful for everyone. Tip: Search your toddler’s favorite characters on this drawing tutorial site and be amazed at your sidewalk art skills.

Lastly, find your child’s TV obsession and milk it for all it’s worth. My daughter is fan-girling over Paw Patrol at the moment. Our routine is to watch two episodes in the morning and two in the afternoon (~40 minutes total). So now that’s all she asks for rather than an endless stream of requests. If she asks for more we say, “But you already watched four Paw Patrols today!” —which sounds like a lot. We have a stash of activity and reading books to support the fandom without the need for more TV.

What are some of your strategies for this social distancing with toddlers? If you have some good tips to share, please do so in the comments!

 

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Filed under 2020, Preschoolers, Toddlers, Weekdays, Weekend

The Weekend: March 20-22


For the second week in a row, this regular Thursday post is not like the others. Where you usually find a round-up of weekend events and activities instead is a recap of the latest KFDC posts, plus a mix of links around the Web, all of which hopefully will be of some help during this unusual time. Happy Weekend!

*KFDC POSTS TO HELP DURING THE CORONAVIRUS*

* Articles, Posts, Memes, and More Relevant Links for Right Now
This mix of links posted last weekend was a quick way of relaying some practical information, offering suggestions, and providing some smiles and laughs.

* What to Do on the Weekdays At Home During the Coronavirus
The title might say it’s for the weekdays, but certainly the suggestions for kids’ activities can be enjoyed on weekends, too.

* Tips for Parents During this Social Distancing Time at Home (that Don’t Involve the Kids)
Some of these ideas especially for parents may actually be better for the weekends, especially for moms and dads who are working from home during the week. Since we can’t dine out, see shows, go to events, or visit many local places, we’ll have more time at home — and this post has suggestions to help make the most of it. Yes, the kids will be home more, too, but parents could take turns giving each other their own time while one hangs with the kids.

* Virtual DC Activities & Experiences for Kids at Home During the Coronavirus
If kids can’t get to some of their favorite local places and activities during this time, you can bring the experiences to them — virtually. From webcams featuring the cherry blossoms and zoo animals to special live streamed programs especially for kids to online tours of iconic spots, there are a bunch of ways to access DC and keep your crew entertained while you #optinside.


*MORE GOOD STUFF*

* DCist offers motivation to stay in with one-star Yelp reviews of DC monuments.

* I recommend reading this article by an Italian mom under lockdown.

* It’s official: DC Public Schools will be closed and distance learning will take place through April 24.

* Humans of New York Quarantine Edition has begun, sharing happy stories, just getting them in a different way. Start reading them here.

* Just watched Grand Budapest Hotel (for the second time, which I realized after I was partly into it). Like every Wes Anderson movie, it’s brilliant.

* Consider ordering take out this weekend to support your favorite local restaurants.

* Get some new family, kid, or adult games and puzzles to make your inside time more fun. Labyrinth has an amazing selection and is open for pick-up and delivery, to boot.

* Funny, but true? 😂

* Trevor Noah ❤️


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