Top tips to keep young minds across Redbridge educated, entertained and connected during coronavirus self-isolation

Redbridge Council has put out advice for parents to keep their children engaged and educated during

Redbridge Council has put out advice for parents to keep their children engaged and educated during self-isolation. Picture: PA/Martin Rickett - Credit: PA

On the first full week of schools being closed Redbridge Council has put out tips for parents to keep children educated, entertained and connected to family and friends while indoors.

Try to keep a routine going:

If you have little ones, try creating a routine for them. Even a simple one that gives a time for getting up, meals, snacks and activities can help maintain structure for young children each day.

Don’t forget to plan in a break for yourself when you schedule in some free play or screen time for the kids!

If you have older children help them create a daily / weekly timetable that follows the subjects they would at school. They may be given online learning to complete.

If your son/daughter gets stuck on a topic, see if you can offer practical solutions, such as finding a website with further information. If the school has the option available, encourage your child to email their teachers if they need help that you can’t provide.

Stay connected to extended family even if you are stuck indoors:

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Help keep grandparents, extended family, friends and children connected to each other without placing anyone at risk. Humans are social beings, we just need to find a different way to go about it!

Get children talking on the phone to family and friends. Your mobile phone plan may include free minutes – now is the time to use it!

Set-up family or friends WhatsApp groups and use it to share pictures, stories and video clips. You can use it as a tool to bring people together, without being near each other.

Grandparents and children will be missing their quality time together. If everyone has video enabled phones, laptops or iPads, why not get grandparents to read a bedtime story to the little ones via video call? And if they’re not video enabled, get them to read a story over the phone and put it on speakerphone.

If you’re self-isolating as a family, it’s the perfect opportunity to bring out the board games. You can use your time together to keep strengthening those family bonds through play, such as family arts and crafts projects. How about creating a poster together with your children exploring your family tree and cultural backgrounds?

Get creative with learning:

Your child’s school may already have provided you with access to resources for online learning, but here are some creative and fun ways to boost learning at home.

Practice writing by making cards with messages inside, or writing short letters. These can then be posted to family, such as grandparents who are self-isolating, to keep those connections going.

Cook up some tasty treats while learning about maths. It’s a great way to learn phrases like “more than” or “less than” by weighing out ingredients. You could also use different shape cookie cutters to learn the names of various shapes.

Tap into the mad scientist in you! There are some fantastic examples online of simple but dazzling experiments that can be done at home with household items. Perfect for curious minds

Set budding engineers a project with Lego.

There are also many fantastic free online resources to support learning: