Staying at home during the lockdown can take its toll on the whole family. A Stamford American International School (SAIS) parent and child advocate shares tips to help both you and your kids’ emotional wellbeing.
If you are struggling with working from home while helping your kids do home-based learning, we get it! It’s not easy on your relationship with your child when mum or dad is stand-in class teacher, substitute head master and parent all in one. So we turned to Evelyn Hurtado, early intervention specialist and facilitator for Circle of Security parenting at Stamford American International School (SAIS) for tips on managing your pre-schooler’s emotional wellbeing. Evelyn is a mother of three so as well being a trained education professional at SAIS, she also has first hand experience of parenting during these uncertain times. Bookmark these tips – we found them super helpful ourselves!
Here are Evelyn’s super useful tips for managing your relationship with your kids to ensure everyone’s best emotional well being whilst staying at home during the lockdown:
1. Work on Family Harmony:
– Set aside at least 20 minutes each day with EACH child. Try to make it the same time every day so your child can look forward to it! What a great way to build a connection and for you to learn about each other. Take their lead, they will love it.
– Try to keep your interactions as positive as possible. Be specific about the behavior you want to see. Young children need clear expectations. An example would be “Please pick up your blocks and put them in this basket” as opposed to “Clean up your toys”. Then celebrate the behavior (not your child). This might look like “Wow, you worked so hard cleaning up your blocks” as opposed to “Good job, such a good boy!”
– We are our child’s role model. We have to try our best to model peaceful and loving relationships and behavior in the home. It will help our children follow suit.
– Allow each family member to take turns and choose a special whole family activity to do together daily.
2. Structure up:
– Schedule a flexible but consistent daily routine for everybody in your family. Post it visually so your little ones can see it and know what to expect. This helps them feel less uncertain, more secure, and increases harmonious behavior.
– Make sure that you schedule movement and exercise every day. There are plenty of wonderful kids P.E and yoga activities on YouTube that engage all of our sensory systems!
3. Ensure Digital Safety:
– No denying it…we are all on our devices more during the Covid-19 crisis, we must give each other a little grace and know that this is the new norm now and it is ok to loosen our expectations. We will have time to get back on track.
– Make sure you set up parental controls on your child’s device.
– Enable safe search settings on computers.
– Make sure to create device-free spaces and times in your house such as no devices in your bedroom or bathroom and only in shared spaces, and definitely not during dinner or playtime.
– Spend some time with your child online and explore games and apps together.
4. Address Challenging Behavior Kindly:
– As hard as we try to handle our children as calmly as possible there will be times that our patience is tested. This is normal. Try not to be hard on yourself about raising your voice or being short with your child.
– Try to respond to the feelings your child is expressing with empathy and respect. You won’t be able to be empathetic all the time, but you can gradually increase the ratio.
– Give your child control of their choices as much as possible. The more they feel in control, the more likely they are to cooperate when they are asked to do something.
– Give your child ways to manage their anger (put on music to do an angry dance, taking deep breaths, squeezing a squishy ball, stomping their feet, drawing a picture).
– Practice preventative measures like establishing firm and clear rules with your child, giving them clear and calm instructions, being consistent and backing instructions with logical consequences.
5. Take care of yourself:
– I say it over and over…This is a stressful time for everybody and a parent’s two most important jobs are connecting with their child and taking care of themselves (so they can extend that care!).
– Make a list of healthy activities you like to do (write them down as a reminder), and make time for yourself every day. You deserve it!
– Share the load; make sure you schedule time on and off with your child(ren) with another adult in the house.
– Remember you are your child’s absolute favorite person in the whole entire world…you have what it takes!
Thank you Evelyn! We feel motivated to repair any ruptures with our kids at home and get everyone smiling and knowing they are loved.
Keen to know more about SAIS? Specially designed for the preschool years, Stamford American Early Learning Village has been built as an environment for safe, experiential learning. At Stamford American, they believe that there is an opportunity for every child no matter where their passion lies. The educators at SAIS are intent on helping each student succeed in their ambition with a personalized approach in a caring, supportive and inclusive academic environment.
Book a live virtual tour at Stamford American International School with their Admissions Manager today!
Stamford American International School (SAIS):
Early Years Campus: 3 Chuan Lane, Gate 4, Singapore 554350
Elementary and Secondary Campus: 1 Woodleigh Lane (off Upper Serangoon Road), Singapore 357684, , [email protected], Tel: (+65) 6602 7247, www.sais.edu.sg