16 Helpful Tips for Parenting Teens During Coronavirus Quarantine
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There are so many ideas swarming the internet in the last few days about how to keep little ones entertained and educated during this pandemic we are currently experiencing. I have not seen any suggestions on how to keep teenagers busy so I’ve come up with some ideas to hopefully help them out.
This is America and we are really good at overloading our kid’s schedules as well as our own.
We shuffle our kids back and forth to class meetings, tutoring, practice, games, their part-time jobs, and hang out sessions but suddenly all in one day – it comes to a screeching halt.
We went from having no time, to having nothing but time.
I am a big advocate for our youth, specifically teenagers. I always feel like there is some sort of disconnect when it comes to checking on them and making sure they’re okay.
Some people might scoff and say they’re teenagers and they can occupy themselves! But really, this is a terrifying time for them just as much as it is for adults and little ones.
I am so passionate about advocating for parents and teens that I wrote a book about it. It’s called Raising Teens Without Losing Your Mind! You can check it out on Amazon.
The coronavirus that has plagued our world should be taken very seriously.
We are practicing social distancing as recommended by the CDC. The social effects this is taking on teens and young adults should be acknowledged.
My daughter, who is a high school sophomore, made the soccer team. The very next day, when school was shut down and practices were canceled, there was a sense of disappointment. After a few hours of knowing school was canceled and really processing all the changes, the excitement began to wear off.
I also have a high school senior who is very worried about her prom, honors night, and commencement ceremonies being canceled.
She feels a bit cheated over the full senior year experience but understands the reason for all of this.
My eldest daughter is approaching her senior year of college and had to move out of her dorm room a month early. While I am elated to have her back at home, I know it will be challenging for her to completely focus in our crazy loud house!
She is taking 18 credit hours this semester and transitioning completely online as all the universities are. It is not something she is exactly thrilled about but she is adapting. She is a peer facilitator for her campus job and her college has done a fantastic job at moving all of their discussion boards online so she can still teach her peers.
In an unprecedented situation, all of the changes we have endured in an instant, we have to teach our teens to be adaptable. Alternatively, I’ve found myself wondering how in the world we will fill our time when we were so busy that we barely had any time before. Now all we have is time.
Here are 16 parenting tips to help keep your teenager occupied through the Coronavirus quarantine and during this worldwide crisis:
Kids and teens alike are scared right now. This is something most of us have never experienced before. Have honest conversations about what is going on in the world and the best steps to stay healthy. Discuss the CDC’s recommendation for proper handwashing and avoid public places as much as possible for the time being.
Come up with some meal prep ideas and cook together! Cooking together is a great time to teach our teens that we are to take care of our bodies and discuss a well-balanced diet. You could ask them to surprise the family by cooking a meal of their choice.
YouTube is such a great platform to utilize at-home workouts. Plan a routine with your teen! From yoga, Pilates, and cardio to stretching and dancing, there’s something for everyone. Let your teen pick a workout and try it out even if it’s something you don’t think you will like, you might find yourself surprised!
Teenagers are really just big kids! Many of them still enjoy doing crafts and projects. Teens love to make fleece blankets, use acrylic paints on canvas, build model cars, make jewelry, or do a puzzle. You can order craft supplies through Amazon and have them delivered right to your front door!
5. Self Care
Paint your nails, do a face mask, or take a bath with an ultra fizzy bath bomb from Rae Soap Company!
Find a recipe to make with your teenager or have them come up with their own creation and have everyone try it.
7. Board Games
Some teenagers think that this is super vintage and uber cool. Play a board game that they have been wanting to try out or teach them how to play your favorite board game from back in the day!
8. Video Games
Ask your teenager if you can play video games with them. Some will cringe and others will be glad you’re interested in checking it out!
Read the same book and talk about it later.
Ask your teenager to specifically write about their life during this time and how it has affected them and talk about it later. Or, offer some creative writing suggestions. Have them begin a journal if they would like.
11. Pray together
I realize this option is not for everyone but if you are a family of faith, praying helps ease anxiety and nerves. I like to ask my girls if they have any prayer requests before we talk to God.
12. Go for a walk
Encourage your teen to get outside and get some fresh air. Being cooped up 24/7 can start to get unnerving.
This is a great time to have your teen clean up or reorganize their room. Ask them to help out with any extra chores around the house.
You could also incentivize them with a financial reward for helping you do small projects that you’ve been neglecting like detailing your car or organizing your kitchen cabinets.
14. Watch Movies
Or, find a series to binge-watch on Netflix.
15. Tik Toks
This platform is trending and there are some hilarious videos. Ask your teen to show you their favorite ones!
16. Encourage Them to Study.
I put this as the last option because I know it won’t be their first choice! Keep their brain sharp, especially if you have a high school junior who will soon take the SAT. You can encourage them to practice at Kahn Academy, a free online learning platform.
Additionally, I let my girls know that we will sharpen up on some skills but also I think that this would be a great time to discuss some life skills such as finances and how to pay bills.
It’s a stressful time for all right now and we are just getting in the thick of it but it is important to acknowledge that this is a very stressful time for our teenagers as well as ourselves.
Keeping them calm, especially for teens who may struggle with panic, anxiety, and depression is important. Encourage your teens that they will get through this time in a rational and calm fashion and try to have some fun with your teenagers along the way by keeping them busy!