7 Fun Things To Do With Your Family At Home During Lockdown 2.0
Lockdown 2.0 has hit! Need to find fun things to do with your family at home? Don’t panic. If you usually rely on family day outs: trips to the cinema, the zoo, sporting events, visiting relatives, holidays perhaps, you’ll be aware that all of these options are now very much off the table. In our busy lives, it can often feel easier to set aside days out to fill the weekly or monthly quota of family fun time, rather than ingraining a consistent pattern of family routine that leads to spending more time together at home. Of course, in an ideal world we would do both! But during Lockdown 2.0, we’ll focus on the latter with this list of 7 fun things you can do at home as a family.
The benefits of families spending time together are widely reported, from reducing the chances of children getting involved in dangerous activities, improved emotional wellbeing, improved academic performance, to deepening a parent’s empathy for their child. These 7 activities which you can do at home with your family will help you to access all of those wonderful benefits, establishing a pattern of behaviours that really will make spending more time with your family easier.
1. Exercise together
Exercising together is a great way to spend more time with your family. Pre-lockdown exercise may have even been a source of division, with one person going to the gym, one person going to a yoga class, someone else jogging in the park and maybe someone
staying at home with their feet up. By exercising at home or in a park together, not only does the person who had their feet up before get involved, but it also brings everyone together.
You can take it turns to lead the session, discover how your family like to exercise and encourage each other. Exercise also releases endorphins which make you feel good, so over time the whole family will associate exercising together, with feeling good!
2. Eat a meal together
Try and eat at least one meal a day together as a family. Again, this one is actually made easier by lockdown with everyone being at home. Whereas before, where dinner was the prime and often sole opportunity to eat together as a family with work getting in the way of sharing meals, now you
have two more to choose from with breakfast and lunch back on the table. It’s important to make this part of the day a mobile phone free space, if you’re not used to doing this, there may be silences and the brain will use that opportunity to seek stimulus elsewhere, namely through the phone. It’s important to keep this time precious and to talk to each other without any distraction. Once its established as a routine, you’ll find it’s a time of day the whole family enjoys and starts to looks forward to.
3. Cook together
Take eating together one step further and try cooking together as a family. As well as the obvious benefit of teaching your children the essential skill of cooking, cooking together is a great opportunity for the kids to learn soft skills, learn responsibility and build self-esteem. The Galley provide
a great list of tasks to get children started in the kitchen. In terms of implementation, we love Toca Boca magazine’s suggestion of pizza Friday, Sunday brunch or whatever works best for your family to help ingrain the activity as part of weekly routine.
4. Do chores together
This one might not sound as fun, but chores do need to be done!
Instead of slaving away by yourself, get the whole family involved and do it together! It’s a great way to encourage routine, teach your kids how to work as part of a team and set a good example for your children. When parents jump in and enthusiastically work WITH their children, the power struggles become almost non-existent. Rule this Roost provide some great suggestions to make chores more fun for the family; from creating teams to race to complete the chores, to setting a challenge to beat the clock.
5. Take photos when you are spending time together
Now this one may be the most millennial of the ideas on this list, but before you turn your nose up at the idea of encouraging your children’s selfie habit, research published by the American Psychological Association suggests relative to not taking photos, photography can heighten enjoyment of positive experiences by increasing engagement. Consolidate the quality time that you spend together by taking a photo to remember it. If you are thinking, there’s only so many angles of the living room we can work from, it’s not about capturing the perfect photo, it’s about capturing the experience, so maybe that new dish you’ve cooked together, the results of a board game or recording a workout.
6. Laugh together
Just to be clear, we are not proposing you sit down at a table and take turns for random spurts of laughter. Here we encourage you to make a conscious effort to engage in activities that will facilitate you to laugh as a family. The more things you do as a family above, the more chance you have of creatin
g organic opportunities to laugh more. Sid Madge, the founder of My Education Employment Enterprise notes that four-year-olds laugh 200 to 300 times a day, while adults only laugh 12 to 15 times a day. Life is a little harder as an adult, so we can forgive some of that gap, but there’s definitely scope to meet somewhere nearer the middle. Try being nostalgic and watching a family comedy. Also the more time spend chit chatting during the family meal, the better you’ll understand each member of your family’s sense of humour as it evolves.
7. Play games together
One of the best things you can do as a parent is to take an interest in the games they’re playing. Children psychologists have always recognized how important play is to a child’s cognitive and emotional development.
You’ll be glad to know we’ve actually saved the best one for last, as owners of a card game company, naturally we would say that, but playing games as a family encompasses a lot of the key aspects from the points above, from team building, encouraging the release of endorphins, educational benefits, to developing creative thinking skills… And best of all, it’s the most fun way to do it and probably the easiest way for children to engage. While there are so many DIY games you can play at home, like teaming up and setting a quiz, charades or Pictionary, it did feel like Scrabble and Monopoly were the only purpose built options to play as a family. As such, we sought to develop a new card game with the main focus of helping families to have fun at home.
Bodyshots Trivia combines mind boggling pictures with quick fire questions into a game that will have the whole family on the edge of their seat with excitement and laughter. Join the competitive family fun and see who wins the battle of wits!
We’ve all now had a practice run of lockdown, learned our lessons, and with these hints and tips to be ready to go this time round. Try and make the next 4 weeks a positive experience using these tips to spend more time with your family at home. Once lockdown is over, hopefully they will have become part of your routine for you to enjoy the long term benefits.