Director of Early Childhood Rebecca Jurow and Director of Lower Division Donna Logue share their recommendations for a spring break spent at home.
It can be challenging to have children home on spring break with virtually no place to go. We have created a list of Therapeutic Toys and Games for younger students we thought would be helpful. You may have many of these materials at home and can possibly order some online.
Keep in mind that one of the best ways to build language and reasoning skills is through imaginative play. Imaginative play is also a powerful way for children to work through their fears. You do not need any special materials to engage in this type of play. Think about building various structures with blankets, sheets, towels and furniture you already have on hand. It can be so comforting for children to be ensconced in a homemade castle or fort fending off monsters or listening to a story with a trusted adult. If your children are tired of their regular construction materials, consider using pots and pans to create towns or alien landscapes for their dolls and figures. Encourage your children to “write” plays and create props and scenery with items found around your home. Dig out old socks and make sock puppet characters, or cut out facial features on paper plates and make masks. Paper bags can also make excellent puppets. Students can record their plays and share them with relatives and special friends to maintain a sense of connectedness. All of the problem solving these activities entail will build their executive functions and give them a sense of control in a time of uncertainty.
Since many students thrive on routine, we encourage parents to post a visual schedule of each day’s activities. If you are working from home, perhaps include the times you will be available for play on the schedule. We suggest that you include a daily half hour or so for structured board games and another hour each day for imaginative play. Knowing when these activities will take place will give your children some needed structure to their days.