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Internationally renowned, Lisa Illingworth, is the co-founder and CEO of FutureProof SA. She is a mom of 2 delightful girls, an Educator and Entrepreneur, passionate about teaching kids about real business matters.

There’s magic in routine. So much so, that everyday of this Lockdown can be your best learning day. 

Why kids need a routine, now.

There’s no doubt that the cabin fever will set in sooner rather than later and keeping routine is now of the utmost importance. Kids, particularly those up to age 8, may associate the COVID-19 self-quarantine period with downtime, most likely believing this to be school holidays or a long weekend.

Curb this presumption by creating a disciplined and structured daily routine – and stick to it! Routine is fundamental in building expectations and meeting them – especially in a time of rapid change. 

COVID-19 lockdown brings with it the opportunity for parents and kids to design their own learning pathways. Now, children can learn at their own pace through many new and exciting channels. Various online education tools are available. Use these and the mock class timetables being circulated ,or, create your own.

And learning goes beyond the classrooms and textbooks.  This is a good time to :

  • add more to your child’s repertoire – perhaps learning a different language, enhancing their maths skills or undertaking a new exercise like the online Zumba class.
  • get creative. Spend at least one day per week in the kitchen together learning to bake or cook new recipes. For the budding entrepreneurs, every problem is an opportunity.
  • demonstrate the world as a set of systems and how it impacts on our economy. Why not provide your children with a challenge to develop a plan around a problem and solve it by building a business solution?

For parents who are now working from home, this can be daunting. Lisa shares a few easy pointers.

Keep the balance, with a routine:

  • Communication

Talk openly to your children about what’s currently going on and the measures that you as a family have put in place during this time. Explain to them that school activities will be taking place at home and that there will be routine.

  • Ownership

Keep things as light as possible to reduce stress on the family, but do allocate some homework and deadlines for the kids. As much as possible, this time should emulate one’s normal day-to-day activities. Putting boundaries in place and having your children ‘own’ and account for their time will also help you to focus on work, housework and other activities.

This is also a good time for us to adapt to and be flexible to change and this new way of working. Fast change is not always easy but teaching our kids how to adapt from a young age is key. 

  • Keep it fun

Have some fun with routine. Add in some outdoor play time in the yard, creative activities such as colouring, painting and pottery and download some workout videos.

In addition, this is the perfect time to set up a shop, come up with a fun business venture, try out new online learning platforms and cook together. Keep the wheels of learning moving but most importantly, keep safe and enjoy being a family. 

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