7 Tips for Parents during COVID-19 and School Closures
Updated: Jul 12, 2020
As COVID-19 spreads through the Bay Area, many parents are facing several weeks away from work, and school closures for your kids. What this means for many of us: a LOT of family time, and potentially having to work from home as well. We might be in the ‘social distancing’ environment for at least a few weeks. With this article, we’re hoping to provide a few tips for simple things you can do to stay sane.
1. Devise a family contract: start with an intentional family conversation to get everyone on the same page. What are going to be our biggest challenges, what are our strengths and weaknesses as a family unit? How do we need to accommodate and help each other? Recognize that you will need things from your teen, and they may also need things from you. Use that conversation to devise a family contract that will help guide how the family interacts over this time period
2. Maintain open communication: continue to maintain open lines of communication about how it’s going. Have set check-ins at least once a week where you discuss the contract and how everyone is doing towards it.
3. Set up structure: while the set boundaries of work and school may have flown out the window, you can re-create your own structure at home. What does your daily schedule look like? Where are people going to work and study from home? Creating this structure and communicating it can ease a lot of family tension.
4. Give each other space: try to define working and studying spaces if at all possible, or potentially times that people will rotate through a single space. And try to have set times or spaces that will be respected for ‘alone’ time. This will be necessary to maintain sanity as you go to a 24/7 together model
5. Limit screen time: it can be tempting to overload on Netflix, video games and TV during this time. Try to find alternate ways to spend time. Some ideas include: puzzles, arts & crafts (family friendship bracelets anyone?), walks outdoors, reading books, listening to podcasts, or taking on new family projects
6. Try stress reduction techniques: we’ve compiled a list of our favorite stress reduction techniques that can all be done during social distancing. These can be helpful for your entire family.
7. Connect your teen with the Daybreak community: whether it’s individual counseling or joining a moderated group session with peers, the Daybreak community is here to help your teen with any stress, anxiety or mental heath concerns. Reach out to us or send us a text at 415-992-6155 to match with a counselor today