To be able to stay focused and creative we all need to move our bodies. When in self-isolation and when family routines have changed that can be a challenge. Our research for the Play Report shows that 73 % of parents want to spend more time with their kids, and 51 %of kids want to spend more time with their parents. Why not make the most out of your time at home right now and do something you normally wouldn’t? Play can help us unwind, stay focused and be more creative, so we asked Jessica Bondesson from Children’s IKEA to share some ideas for activities – from homeschooling to play.
“When we play we forget about time and you get a fantastic feeling in your body. When kids and parents play together, we meet at the same level and get to know each other better. It’s important to remember that we all play differently and reading a book or cooking food together is as much play as doing role play or playing a card game,” says Jessica.
For Jessica, the home is an inspiring and safe playground that brings creativity to the whole family. At IKEA she works with a safety education called “Children’s School” and she shares knowledge to IKEA co-workers and suppliers around the world about children and how unpredictable they are.
“This is a real eye-opener training that makes you see the world through the eyes of a child and how we at IKEA can make that world the safest place to be in and develop through play,” says Jessica.
Just like many others, Jessica works from home right now. Even if her children still go to school there are weeks when they stay at home, and most of their after school activities are on hold.
“We are lucky to be able to be outside, but with a safety distance. Me and my husband Tobias starts the day by ‘walking to the office’. Is just a short walk around the neighbourhood but I think it’s so important with routines for the body and mind. We end the day it in the same way as we started it — but this time we ‘walk home’ instead. This helps us feel that the work is over and that it’s time for other activities together with the rest of the family!” says Jessica.
Jessica asked her sons Rasmus and Oskar to help her with ideas, and together they have come up with five activities you can do at home. Four indoor activities, and one outdoor activity if you have the possibility to leave the house or have access to a garden.
“To be able to stay focused and creative we all need to move! The human body is not constructed to sit still for a very long time and it’s easy to get all kinds of body aches. Get up and move to kick-start the blood circulation and feel the energy pumping in your body,” says Jessica.
Let’s get started!
Craft a schedule!
A good way to kickstart a week is to craft a schedule. Create a template out of paper and then tape some patches that can be replaced depending on what day it is and what to do. It is good to schedule energy breaks! Just as important for both children and adults! If you can, schedule for some outdoor activities. Fill up your energy reservoirs by going outside.
An activity wheel game is a fun way to activate the whole family. Make a list of different physical activities like high jumps or burpees. Spin the wheel and complete the assignment. If you don’t have the wheel to spin, you can use a deck of cards or dice instead. Have fun!
Make your own popcorn garland
Use the stay at home time to play with your kids and do something you normally wouldn’t – like make a garland out of popcorn! You need popcorn, a blunt sewing needle, and sewing thread. You can find more ideas in the book “Hej smak”, which is Swedish for “hello taste”.
A beautiful indoor pillow fort
This activity was my absolute favourite indoor activity while growing up! A pillow fort is a wonderful place for both play and relaxation. You don’t need much to build your pillow fort. We used two shelves, a bedspread, some pillows and some led lights. Why not read a book in this cozy hideaway. Be safe! Remember to make sure that any standing furniture you use is properly attached to the wall.
To be able to stay focused and creative we all need to move! If you have bicycles you can build a bicycle obstacle course outdoors that you and your children can ride through on your bike. We used logs and some leftover patio stones and built a track on our backyard in Älmhult. It’s a fun and energizing activity to make the days at home feel a bit shorter.