For any child, disrupting their schedule and their normal social interactions can be very stressful. Children who have experienced trauma and loss are often even more sensitive to these changes. One of the ways that you can maintain a sense of normalcy for them is to keep them connected to their friends that they are used to seeing on a regular basis. Here are a few ways to keep your kids connected without being face to face:
· FaceTime or Skype: Your child may not be able to participate in traditional play dates right now, but try utilizing video calls to allow your kids to have play dates together. You could also set up a video call during lunch and allow your kids to have a meal with their friends, just like they would at school.
· Pen Pals: This may be a great time to introduce your kids to physical letter writing, and as a bonus it would be great reading practice!
· Movie Night: Plan a movie night for your kids and their friends to all watch the same movie at the same time. Then, plan a phone call or skype afterwards.
· Game Night: There are several apps that allow kids to play games with friends. Some of these include Uno & Friends, Monopoly, Checkers, Four in a Row, Draw N Guess (Pictionary), and Virtual Table Tennis. Remember to talk with your kids about online safety and supervise appropriately if using games online.
· Video Making: If you don’t have the time to sit down for a phone call, there are several apps that allow you to take short videos of yourself throughout the day and send them to friends. One that’s simple and free is Marco Polo.
Do you have a creative way you’ve kept your kids in touch with their friends? Share them in the comments section below!