It's been weeks since we found ourselves in quarantine, with our habits and lifestyles changed.
Parents and their children have probably been experiencing a challenging period - the kids can't go to school and nobody can say when they will go back while parents have to work from home and help the kids with their online school responsibilities, trying at the same time to make this period easier and fun for them.
Still, the fact is that every period of our lives is an opportunity to learn. For you, as a parent, there are many life lessons you could teach your children in these times, making sure they come out of it richer and more prepared for future challenges.
The greater good
Depending on the situation, some kids figure out instantly that something is for the greater good while others ask questions and learn during the process.
The pandemic quarantine is a unique situation, so you should explain to your kids there's an important reason why they can't hang out with their friends, go to birthday parties or visit their grandma and grandpa. Let them know they are doing something incredibly good for others although it looks like they are not doing much except feeling frustrated or bored. Explain to them that's what sacrifice is - putting your wishes and needs on hold for a bit to help somebody else who needs it more.
Cooking is important and fun
With the whole family stuck in their homes for days and weeks, it's wise to show your kids that cooking is fun and that it's the room in which both men and women should spend their time to have a healthy life.
Younger kids will enjoy tasting the cooking while you and your partner are experimenting with ingredients. Let them be with you both in the kitchen to share the joy of cooking. Draw their attention to which food is good for them and encourage them to eat it more often.
Older kids have a great opportunity to prepare for the college by learning how to make more complex meals than a bowl of cereals. Teach them what the most important utensils are for, explain the difference between various pans and pots, show them how to prepare simple but tasty and healthy meals.
Compassion and solidarity
During this challenging period, you have the chance to explain to your kids the importance of togetherness not just inside your community but globally, too. More importantly, it's not just people that should be included but the whole living world. Nature is crucial for our survival and all living creatures deserve our compassion and help.
Teach your kids how to show respect and compassion for other nations and nature. Let them know there are amazing ways to learn more about the world and other countries and help them by traveling. They could choose to have a gap year or join a volunteer action in their community. An even greater opportunity to show solidarity and compassion is to volunteer abroad in exotic countries where they can expand their horizons and make a real difference. This type of experience is a unique way to understand we are all one and that we should all take care of each other.
New skills and hobbies
With so much time on our hands, why not explore our interests and passions and learn in the process?
Kids are like sponges - they learn quickly, often just by looking, and they are open to new things. Their creativity and imagination are endless while they are simultaneously interested in mastering new skills. Use this period to motivate them to discover a new hobby and develop a skill or two. Whether it's how to fix simple things, tie-dying, building birdhouses, or sewing, the point is to have fun while learning. There are numerous YouTube videos on almost anything you would like to teach your kids if you don't consider yourself crafty - just try together.
Enjoying one’s own company
Kids live in here and now, surrounded by friends or family members with whom they have fun. However, the quarantine has forced them to stay inside with only their family close to them. The problem is that parents don't have enough time to dedicate completely to their kids, as they have to work online and do housework most of the day.
Consequently, kids now can't expect to be entertained by others in most cases. They have to turn to themselves and discover the joy of independent play. This is a skill that should be encouraged by you as parents - motivate them to come up with their own ideas on how to organize their playtime. Make them feel good and capable every time they find what to do on their own. It will inspire their imagination in incredible ways. Plus, they can experiment and "make mistakes" in a safe, controlled environment.
The quarantine has brought us all together even though we're physically separated. The only thing we can do is to turn to our loved ones around us and share love and knowledge. Your kids learn from you constantly - so help them learn great, amazing things.