If you’re like us, the mere idea of no school, no friends and no activities sends chills down your spine. We agreed to be stay at home moms under the condition that 9 months of the year they would be at school 6 hours a day. Yet, here we are social distancing and self quarantined. Measures that absolutely must be taken.

We’ve seen a lot of posts on perfected homeschool schedules and super-crafty home activities. But what if you’re not entirely setup for homeschooling and are a Pinterest fail? We took our own advice and looked for help to solve this problem while practicing social distancing!

On guard for socializers?

Manageable home schedules with kids

We collected ideas from our wonderful mom friends like teacher and librarian Abby Moran and Amy Hedges, to put together a workable schedule and specific ideas on how to fill it. Most importantly, we’ve factored in maintaining (what’s left of) your sanity.

Possible Daily Schedule:
Schoolwork (1 hour)
Outdoor break
Schoolwork (1 hour)
Quiet time
Outdoor time
Family time

Amy Hedges put together a visual display that we liked because it really defined mom time and expectations in a tangible way. Viewing this layout enabled us to see while the kids are home, we can still maintain a balance to our day and routines. It also acknowledges we are not running a full-time school at home.

These are both simple schedules you can mold, alter, add and delete to fit your family’s flow.

Talent-free activities to do with kids

Now for filling the free time in a way that’s in line with social distancing!

Outdoor Break:

  • Going for walks/hikes.
  • Family bike rides.
  • Doing yoga and loving-kindness meditation. Try doing this outside if possible.
  • Working on trampoline tricks.
  • Swimming including sharks and minnows, diving for rings and pool games.
  • Playing ball: soccer, football, basketball. You can do this in the yard or an open field or park as long as it’s not busy and the kids stay off playgrounds.
  • Driveway chalk art and bubbles.
  • Walking the dog.

Quiet Time:

  • Learning new jokes.
  • Jigsaw puzzling and other puzzles.
  • Sending snail mail, especially to people who may be isolated.
  • Picking up rooms, completing chores. Now is a good time to have the kids help out.
  • Watching TED talks and inspirational speakers.
  • Listening to audiobooks:
    • Libby and Hoopla are free apps, and you can borrow books for free, thanks to your public library.
  • Drawing, coloring, painting and unorganized crafting.
  • Making paper airplanes and having a fly competition.
  • Creating with Play Doh.
  • Building indoor or outdoor forts.
  • Cleaning closets and choosing things to give away.
Indoor forts!

Family Time:

  • Baking together. Kids love baking and we love desserts. We’ll stick to cookies and easy items over here. Here’s our go-to cookie recipe. Fill with vanilla ice cream and you have an awesome dessert!
  • Holding a kids’ fashion show or talent competition.
  • Have the kids put on a play! They can script it, practice on their own and then preform for you.
  • Biking, hiking and nature walks.
  • Board Games: LIFE, Connect Four, Battleship, Pictionary, Guess Who, Monopoly, Jenga, Dominos.
  • Card Games: Euchre, Solitaire, Go Fish, War, Uno!
  • Watching classic movies.
    • Common Sense Media has a great list of movies all kids should see by the time they’re 12 plus a bunch of other lists like best family movies on Netflix.
  • Watching SNL classics.
  • Jigsaw puzzling.
  • Setting up a scavenger hunt.

Feeling ambitious?

Pitch a tent with the kids help in the yard and play camping! Have them haul in pillows, flashlights and games for a fun-filled evening. If you have a fire pit, try making s’mores. Bedtime stories will work out great in the tent too. My husband is in charge of this one. I’m in it for the BBQ, BYOB and s’mores only.

School related work and activities:

  • Here’s a complete list of companies offering free educational subscriptions due to school closings.
  • Reading lots of books, of course!
    • Here’s the summer reading list from The American Library Association’s Association for Library Service to Children
    • Your local independent bookstore will mail you book. Let’s help them weather this time.
  • Completing math sheets from the school and online.
  • Working on math fact flashcards.
  • Working on Vocabulary.
  • Working on Spanish: Duolingo!
  • Learning to type – Dance Mat Typing from the BBC
  • Touring museums online.
  • Drawing Session. Doodle every day at 1:00 EST with Mo Williems, The Kennedy Center’s Education Artist-in-Residence.  
  • Looking up new information. Your libraries at the local and state levels pay for all kinds of cool things that you can use for free.
  • Putting on a Play. The kids can script it, practice and preform.
  • Planning a pollinator garden.
  •  Setting up a butterfly garden.
  • Our kids are really into Power Point and all things computers. We’re going to have them make simple PP’s for their book reviews and present them weekly. Reading, comprehension, art and computer classes complete! They are doing this both during schoolwork and free time.

Then there’s this. Which is 100% a perfect option!