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School closed? Here are some ways to keep your kids busy


As the COVID-19 (coronavirus) epidemic continues to disrupt life as we know it, here are some resources for those looking for ways to occupy their children in these strange days.

The Playlist has a variety of things you can do with your kids in your own home or yard. More ideas for indoor activities: 9 creative and educational things to do with kids at home.

Card games are a social, screen-free way to have fun indoors, whether you are playing memory with a 3-year-old or shuffling three packs together for a super-ultra-game of BS with your preteens. Board games, both simple and complex, can raise the mood of the room.

Here are some games to try: 7 great ideas for a family game night.

If you want to keep your kids in “school mode” even though there’s no school to go to at the moment, Kahn Academy has a huge amount of resources on all sorts of topics, including free phone apps for all levels. Kahn Academy is also a lifeline for high-schoolers worried about AP exams and standardized tests. For more ideas, check out Teacher recommended online learning resources, and how parents can support remote learning.

Other ideas: National Geographic has a great website, a YouTube channel and a kid-oriented website. Get extra practice on a skill that needs work. Our elementary school directed us to for printable worksheets. Documentaries: look for things on Netflix that you might normally overlook. Alternately, introduce your kids to the movies you grew up on. That's a sort of education. Suggestions that come quickly to mind: "Black Stallion" and "Raiders of the Lost Ark."

Don’t let the virus keep you and your kids from playing outside.  In fact, getting excercise is an essential activity and you are encouraged to go for walks or bike rides, provided you obey social distancing rules, and stay at least six feet from non-family members. And, although playgrounds and sports courts are closed, parks are still open.

Here are some things you can do close to home:

20 backyard games for beating boredom

Teach a kid to ride a bike using these 4 steps

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Seattle's Child staff