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How to make your children independant during home office ?

Covid-19, work from home and school closures make your daily life difficult, isn’t it ? If you would like your children to be more independent at home in order to work peacefully, this article is made for you.

Justine Varin - Writer

5 ways and activities to make your children independent

Between school closures and home office, it’s especially hard to have a stress-free day. Concentrating at work has become mission impossible and you feel like you’re constantly being interrupted by your children. Indeed, this is a feeling that all parents feel at the moment.

That said, there are some tricks that can be put in place to help your children gain independence and also to respect the times when you should not be disturbed.

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1) Temporal visualization

Children do not have the same notion of time as we do, because at their age the brain and cognitive capacities are different from those of adults. The awareness of time passing is ultimately a concept that is concretized by visuals and numbers, we are aware of time because we read the time and have a calendar. For children, it is exactly the same thing, however, to make them better integrate the concept of time, you will have to be a little creative!

The trick is about putting a large clock with needles in plain view of the children, either in the living room or in the playroom. Next, create cardboard clocks with your children and place them around the house. For example, hang one on your office door and mark the time when your children can disturb you. Your little ones will only have to look at the real clock to see if they can come to you or not.

You can apply this technique to the television, the kitchen (for snacks) and you can also create secondary clocks that mark the end of each activity.

2) The catalogue against boredom

Boredom is a child’s and parent’s nightmare, our little ones start to bicker or get into mischief because they are not busy. Although boredom is ultimately a very healthy thing for children’s creativity and development, it is true that the repeated confinements associated with the pandemic are not easy for them.

The solution is to offer them a multitude of games ranging from manual activities, to more sporting games or even reading. To do this, there is nothing better than to create an anti-boredom catalogue with your children. Take pictures of all their games and activities and classify them by theme: quiet activities, sports, crafts… This way your children will always find something to have fun without asking you, they will only have to leaf through the catalogue to find ideas. But make sure you add new activities and update it regularly, otherwise your children will quickly get bored of it.

“Make your children independent in a few tips!”

3) A well-established program!

There’s no need to ask children under 12 to take complete charge for a whole day. You will inevitably be disturbed at some point, but it is possible to plan your children’s day so that you are not overburdened.

This requires a well-rehearsed program, so don’t hesitate to post a program that you have drawn up and explained to the children previously.  Post this program in front of the children and apply the system of clocks seen earlier for greater efficiency. The schedule should include all the tasks for the day, and it will be much easier to understand if it is illustrated.

4) Use technology intelligently

There is nothing more annoying than a child who has spent the whole day in front of screens and who is grumpy for the rest of the evening. Depriving children of screens altogether is pointless and brings more frustration than benefit. Our little ones have grown up with them and it’s normal for them to use them, the key is to regulate screen time and make sure that TV or games can be a benefit to your children.

When it comes to films and TV, choose educational films and documentaries. Try to create a special list for your children, so that they can watch TV in peace without you constantly monitoring what they can watch and they will learn a lot from the film’s contents. Do the same with computers by creating a list of allowed sites with educational games.

Your children may be quite frustrated for not having free will, but make it clear that it is for the day and on the weekend you will be a little more flexible on programs.

In order to limit the amount of time spent on screens, you can program your devices to go into standby mode remotely, just look it up on the internet and you should easily be able to do this. With the sleep mode, the screens will turn off directly and you will not have to intervene.

If your children are rather addicted to screens and are quite young. To make it easier for them, you can fool them by telling them that the government has decided on the programs and video games, since the children no longer go to school during the day and there is nothing you can do about it.

5) Acting on daily life

No, you cannot ask your children to be independent overnight! Learning to be independent takes time and must be developed every day.

Children learn best when learning is done through games, so don’t hesitate to use creativity to entertain them while making them independent.

For example, if you want your children to set the table, what a better way than putting stickers on your table to guide them. Red can be the forks and green the plates. All they have to do is place the cutlery on the corresponding sticker.

In conclusion, there are a multitude of tricks that can help you make your kids more independent and make their days at home easier! Don’t be discouraged, with a few tips you can do it.

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