Connecting while Sheltering in Place
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Connecting while Sheltering in Place

From the Oxford Dictionary:

cabin fever (cab·in fe·ver)
noun
informal•North American
irritability, listlessness, and similar symptoms resulting from long confinement or isolation indoors during the winter.
“a great energy-burning game for exuberant Cubs with midwinter cabin fever”

Sound familiar? We hope you’re finding lots of ways to entertain your kids and yourself. Since this new “normal” may be with us for awhile, we want to share a twist on one of the ways many of us are connecting with loved ones.

You’re probably already using Skype, FaceTime, Zoom or other social media apps to call your favorite people. If not, you should! It’s free and easy–and valuable. Imagine what it must be like on the other end of life to suddenly feel cutoff from the people you know and love. Even a five-minute call feels golden to them. But kids don’t always have a lot to say to a grandparent (or if they’re lucky, a great grandparent). Here’s an idea to make those calls easier for kids and at the same time build an even stronger connection. Help your child plan out some questions to ask the older friend or relative. Your child will gain a new perspective on the person, and the other person will have some fun memories to share that will bring a smile to everyone. Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Who was your best friend when you were my age? Why was that friend so special?
  • What’s a favorite memory you have about school?
  • What was your favorite subject? Why? What was your least favorite? Why?
  • How did you get to school? What did you like or not like about going to school like that?
  • What did you do after school when you were my age?
  • What did you do in the summer when you were my age?
  • What chores were you responsible for at your house?
  • What was a favorite food from when you were growing up? Do you still like to eat that food? Why or why not?
  • What was your favorite holiday as a kid? Why? If it was a holiday where you got presents, what presents do you remember getting?
  • What was the first car you ever owned? Where was the most interesting place you ever drove it?
  • Did your family take vacations? Tell me about a vacation that stands out in your memory. How did you travel? Where did you go? What did you do?

 

See how easy it is? Your child should be ready to answer these questions too! Even better, record the calls and save them to watch years from now. Who knows? Someday your child might be showing the video to his or her children or grandchildren.