By Marté J. Matthews, LMFT
Let’s face it, our kids are going to have more screen time than we are ordinarily comfortable with. We are in a global pandemic, trying to get some work done to keep our workplaces afloat through this crisis. The kids are going to be on their devices. But that doesn’t have to mean that they are watching endless hours of worthless videos.
What else is there? I’m glad you asked!
Child & Family Counseling Group is now offering story reading on our website! Throughout the shelter in place order, we invite you to come join us to hear new stories and poetry for children. The format is simple: one of our therapists will read a story, just like we were in the same room with your child.
In addition to CFCG story time, maybe you and the kids want more fun and worthwhile programs. There IS quality programming out there on the web. No time to find it? No problem! We started the search for you:
Storyline Online offers free picture books & story books read by Hollywood actors from the SAG-AFTRA foundation: https://www.storylineonline.net/
Magic Keys offers a free library of story books & picture books to read online, some available with audio: http://www.magickeys.com/books/
Free Children’s Stories offers free original stories for children of different ages: https://www.freechildrenstories.com/
Sesame Street in Communities You can answer a handful of questions to be directed to helpful reading, activities and videos made just for children and families like yours: https://sesamestreetincommunities.org/
Muzzy is a language learning program offered by the BBC in the UK that offers animated stories to teach children a new language: https://www.muzzybbc.com/ The BBC has a discount available currently. Visit the website and look for the light blue banner at the top: Click Here for Special Offer Given School Closings
Ready for more? Additional lists are available from wonderful organizations:
Commonsense Media is a wonderful resource for parents, with even more recommendations during the Shelter In Place order. You can view the full website here: https://www.commonsensemedia.org/
View the special Covid 19 Shelter in Place part of the Commonsense Media website, which 3 sections: Learning At Home, Entertainment, Understanding & Explaining the news: https://www.commonsensemedia.org/resources-for-families-during-the-coronavirus-pandemic
Check out Picklebums.com’s article for more ideas about ways kids can enjoy screen time that parents can feel good about: https://picklebums.com/guilt-free-screen-time/
Pick a few of these resources, and relax with your child as they enjoy some worthwhile screen time!