Remote Parenting Tips during the Pandemic
Many co-parenting families have routines and systems in place that may be impacted by Stay Home, Stay Healthy orders. Perhaps the children have health issues, or you have health issues that make it inadvisable to be with your children during your regularly scheduled time. Or you could be quarantined in a different state and unable to travel for child exchanges.
Below are some ideas for interacting with your children (or grandchildren) while you are in separate quarantine spaces.
- Record a video of you reading their favorite book – Chances are you have a copy of your child’s favorite book at home. Use your laptop or smart phone to record a video of you reading the story aloud and send it to your co-parent who currently has the child. If you have older kids, you can pick a chapter book that is age-appropriate and read a chapter or two aloud to your children each day.
- Watch a movie or TV show together – Netflix has a “party” feature that allows you to watch the same movie or show with your friends and family at the same time while being in different locations. Use the instructions located here to set up this feature.
- Play a game together over video call/chat– Zoom and Google hangouts both have a screen share feature. Some fun games you could play virtually include charades, I Spy, Twenty Questions, Pictionary, and Hangman. Board games likes Monopoly, Sorry, Battleship and Candyland can also be played remotely if both people have the same board games at home.
- Send your child funny videos from social media platforms Facebook, Instagram, or other video sources so that you can discuss them. Encourage your child to make videos for you.
- Do homework remotely with your child. Review the progress and be encouraging that they can connect with others over the internet for homework/classwork. There are numerous websites that are offering age appropriate home school projects.
- Set a specific time to talk with your children every day or at least three times a week. Maybe 7 pm on Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday. Then be sure to call at the specified time. Do not focus on the pandemic, instead talk about hobbies, interests, or funny home videos.
Realize that everyone is worried about this unseen danger that is impacting the world. It is fine to say that you are disappointed that you cannot be with them personally but are thrilled that you can connect in other ways. Be encouraging and cheerful with your child but also realistic.
If you have questions about how Stay Home, Stay Healthy Order may affect your specific Parenting Plan, please contact one of our family law attorneys.