Spring has sprung and we are facing some uncertain and difficult times. The good news is that the weather is starting to change, the sun is starting to shine bright and we have some fun ideas to brighten your day at home with your littles. 

We should all be practicing social distancing as per the CDC to help flatten the curve of this unfortunate virus, but getting outside is essential to our mental health, which includes your kids. Now is the time to teach them how to throw the ball, to garden, to jump the squares in a game of hop scotch, it’s time to count the stars and makes s’mores in your fire pit, listen to the birds, swing on the hammock, and be active in your daily life by taking walks. Get outside, enjoy the fresh air and teach your children the importance of outdoor activities. Keep your distance from others, but enjoy this time with your family. 

While stuck inside we have some wonderful ideas to help pass the time as well. There are many virtual tours you can experience right from your living room. #BringTheZooToYou is a campaign that was started to share activities and educational videos with children while they are at home through Zoo and Aquarium social media pages. The Lehigh Valley Zoo is posting daily to their Facebook page educational videos to help keep your children occupied and learning about animals. Another wonderful offer being made to parents are to-go craft kits from Color Me Mine Lehigh Valley located in Bethlehem and The Art Den located in Nazareth. You can log onto their Facebook pages for more details on how to place your order. Sweet Girlz Bakery in Easton is offering a sweet deal through their at home cookie decorating kits as well. Give them a call or message them on Facebook to place your order today. How about an indoor camping trip? Lots of fun and something your kids will remember for years to come.  

Now let’s talk about online sites offering educational courses because it’s important that we keep our children’s minds fresh, alert and learning. Kidsactivitiesblog.com has a complete list from A to Z of free online educational classes for children of all ages. Starfall.com offers free educational classes for kids in pre-k, kindergarten and grades 1-3. PBSKids.com offers educational videos with your child’s favorite characters to help them learn. Hooked on Phonics and ABC Mouse are both offering your first month of subscription free, which is a great deal. Local author and journalist to this column, Erin Rafanello Ferguson, is offering Facebook Live story time on Wednesdays and Fridays at 1 p.m. You can log onto my Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/writerAuthorjournalistProfessional/ to hear some of your children’s favorite stories. Reading stimulates children’s imaginations and expands their understanding and ability to develop language and listening skills. As they say, reading is the passport to countless adventures, so make sure you take your child on an adventure every day. 

Bring it back to the basics, teach your children your favorite recipe and explain to them where it came from, teach them how to do laundry, vacuum, do the dishes, we are all so busy nowadays so this is the perfect opportunity to slow down and teach your children the essential life skills that they need. These basic skills bring a level of respect to your home and instill gratitude for all your hard work that sometimes goes unrecognized. Right now, more than ever, we all need to be grateful and teaching our children to have a grateful heart is important. Don’t forget, always love your littles a little bit more, because the love you share with them, they will share with the world. 

Stay healthy, Lehigh Valley. 


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