The COVID-19 pandemic has closed schools, kept families apart and put a stop to playing with friends. We all understand how important social distancing is to stop the spread of this awful virus, but this new way of life is having a negative impact on our children’s mental health.

To support your child’s wellbeing during this difficult time, it is important to help them stay connected with their friends. Here are some great ideas from an Independent School in Hampshire on how you can do this…

Regular video calls

Video calls are a great way for children to keep in contact with friends whilst staying home. Zoom, FaceTime and WhatsApp can all be used to safely communicate from a computer, phone or tablet. If you have a younger child who isn’t old enough to use one of these services, you could arrange the video call for them with their friend’s parents. This will allow your child to have a virtual play date and enjoy some social interaction with other children.

Play online games

Online games may not be a parent’s usual activity recommendation; however they do offer a fun way for children to communicate with their friends. Certain games allow players to connect with friends online, so that they can chat and play the game together. This method of communication could be considered as an occasional treat or perhaps used as an incentive to complete homework!

Movie parties

We may not be able to go to the cinema to watch a movie with friends, but your children can still have a movie party online. Netflix Party is a fantastic way to watch movies and shows with your friends virtually. It synchronises video playback, so that friends can all watch along at the same time; PLUS it has a group chat feature so that everyone can share their opinions.

Post a treat

Children get so excited when they receive a surprise in the post, so help your child to make a friend smile by posting a thoughtful gift. Perhaps you could encourage your child to practice their letter writing skills or get out your craft supplies and make a special hand-made card.


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