How to Ensure Your Little Ones have Educational Fun While Stuck at Home

colorado shines logoIt’s not news that we’re all balancing a lot right now. Some people are stuck working from home, some are still going into work, but everyone is facing a lot of changes.The little ones? They were in school, preschool, kindergarten or even in child care. For some, not anymore, at least for right now.

Fortunately, there are a lot of great resources online to help you find fun and interesting things to do with your little ones. Most school districts have directories of things to do, and if your child is of school age, their teachers might be giving them tasks and assignments. Every savvy parent also knows the importance of quality child care too: You’re not only entrusting your child to their care, you’re trusting that they are going to engage your little one – or not so little one! – in fun, stimulating, age-appropriate activities too.

You may already know about Colorado Shines, a program from the Colorado Department of Human Services that can help you find high-quality licensed child care anywhere in the state. But did you know that Colorado’s Early Learning and Development Guidelines also have some great resources for families? You can find the guidelines at EarlyLearningCO.org along with helpful videos, and age-appropriate activities for you and your child.

EarlyLearningCO.org is really focused on your youngest family members, the newborns, infants, babies, toddlers up to kids in third grade who are most likely to be forgotten in the flurry of homework help and tween and teen management that might define your family life nowadays. In fact, head over to EarlyLearningCo.org and pop into the parents & caregivers section and you’ll find age-appropriate information and activities for newborns, 4-8 months, 9-18 months, 19-36 months, 3-5 years, and kindergarten through 3rd grade.

For example, I have a dear friend who has a one-year-old. The site explains that at this age “infants are ready to explore their world and are becoming more adventurous as their increasing mobility allows them to have new experiences.” More importantly, the videos offer calm and appropriate suggestions on how you can interact with your little one that will help him grow and develop.

My friends have already learned that rather than get frustrated with their baby’s constant demands, it’s smarter to take turns entertaining and interacting with him. Little ones sleep a lot (a blessing if you’re trying to work too!) so really focusing on them and interacting with them in the ways suggested on EarlyLearningCO.org will help support their learning and development, and then help them drift off into a nap during which time you can then get your work done.

It’s not easy to juggle all of these things simultaneously, but try to keep a sense of humor and remember that your child’s needs are just as important as those of your employer. If you have other family in the house, now’s a good time to teach them how to help with child care too.

And once things are back to normal and our children can head back to child care , kindergarten or similar, don’t forget that ColoradoShines.com can help you find some great options for high-quality licensed child care anywhere in the state.

Disclosure: I wrote this article with the cooperation of the Colorado Shines team and was compensated for my time.

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