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COVID-19 has us home bound. The possibility of cabin fever setting in is very real. Let’s be honest, you might have to get some of your own work done. Or you might just need a break. Honestly—that’s ok! We’re all human and this is a very unusual circumstance. Team BCB has rounded up some of our favorite online activities for kids during COVID-19. We’ve included tons of options for virtual fun—classes, apps, ways to stay connected and more. We will be adding to this list ongoing so keep coming back to take a look. We will all get through this period together. If you have any to add to the list, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Megan Jessen Camp Kindergarten: Each morning, Megan is doing a Facebook live “Morning Meeting,” including topics such as calendar, weather, ABCs, music, and reading a book. This would be suitable for three to seven year olds (or younger/older).
Virtual Classes with some of our FAVORITES! Many of BCB’s partners are hosting virtual classes right now. From Stages Chicago, Bubbles Academy, Ben Tatar and Mr. Dave Music, Big City Readers and Movement Junkies Yoga with Robyn Taxman, —you can tune in for classes to keep you and your little ones busy WHILE supporting small businesses we LOVE.
Nanny Nikki will be doing a free Live YouTube Concerts on March 17th and 19th at 10:15 AM CT. More classes to be added.
Caribu is making virtual playdates with friends and family easier than ever before and now due to the circumstances it’s FREE! Similarly, the Marco Polo App combines the best of texting, social media and video chats – all in one private, easy to use app. This is a great way to set up a safe and private group for your older kids and their friends to use during this time of social distancing. BCB Founder + CEO Lindsay Pinchuk has a group set up with a bunch of friends. They’re taking Happy Hour to a whole new level. Both of these are great ways to embrace the new normal and to virtually hang out.
Kids’ author Mo Willems “Lunch Doodle” will release a new “Lunch Doodle” video each Monday at 1 PM EST. Kids can doodle with Mo and learn different techniques and more about this amazing artist.
Make your own kaleidoscope with OsmoKaleidoscope. This app is a hands-on, collaborative and creative learning tool co-designed with the help of TESLab students (pre-kindergarten to 4th grade) at Bennett Day School in Chicago, Illinois. This highly creative app empowers kids to design and create beautiful kaleidoscopic images with everyday objects, toys, art materials, or seasonal items from nature. For example, it helps them create beautiful symmetrical patterns from items found in nature, like a butterfly, leaf, clover, in addition to learn the alphabet or numbers. Osmo Kaleidoscope app for iPad and Amazon Fire, normally $9.99, is NOW free.
Some other options include: Digital coloring pages for the whole family!
Kinedu is an early childhood development app for ages 0-4 that provides creative, science-based at-home activities for parents to engage with their children. Working from home is hard enough, now with children 0-4 home, this app is a great option to keep everyone busy. Kinedu is now offering its app for FREE until April 15th in all markets globally. The app, regularly priced at $89.99 annually, is available on Apple and Google Play in 3 languages: English, Spanish and Portuguese.
Some of our other favorite learning apps include Scholastic, Mathscore, Starfall, Khan Academy, and Fun Brain. Also make sure to check out some of the educational apps from some of our favorite entertainment brands: Noggin and PBS Kids. Two other awesome ideas are these math videos with lessons, real life uses of math and famous actors; and here’s 80 free science activities to entertain your kiddos. Lastly, schedule into your day a daily science or cooking experiment (all for free!) at home with the kiddos.
You can never start story time too young. There are so many great places to tune in for story time and to get new books to read (for your older kids!). Story Online features favorite kids books read by famous people and Epic has one of the leading online libraries for kids under twelve. If writing is up your kids’ alley, grab 356,300,262,144 story starters and start writing!
Join Facebook Live with Hi-Five Sports, one of our favorite Chicago-based sports classes. Click here for more information on Facebook Live classes with the Hi-Five Sports staff from this awesome Chicago-based entity.
The Core Method is an awesome workout currently offering free access to two virtual programs for kids and adults. In addition to Pilates, Kidlates is a series of exercises proven to increase trunk stability and strength in kids, enhancing their success in other sports and even in sitting attentively in class. For free access to both The Core Method Kidlates and Pilates, visit this link and follow the prompts to create your own log-in for a a FREE online subscription until May 1st.
Burn off energy and bring a smile to those in the group – upload your dance party video to the Social Distancing Virtual Dance Party Facebook Page and watch others’!
Noodle is an app used in classrooms all over the world to get kids up and moving when they need a break. Movement AND mindfulness, Noodle gets kids up and going in a fun and creative way.
Get outside! Tinkergarten At Home provides parents with a week’s worth of DIY activities that are simple, wildly fun for kids and designed for learning for any age. All you’ll need is what you’ve got at home and a spot outside. You can log on to their live online sessions with parents from around the country to collaborate and share ideas on how to bring these DIY activities to life. Sign in for free.
Google Arts & Culture teamed up with hundreds of museums allowing for virtual visits of some of the most renowned exhibitions from across the globe. CLICK HERE for more and to visit some of our favorites including The British Museum in London, the Musee d’Orsay in Paris and the Uffizi Gallery in Florence. The world is truly your oyster. Here are some other great places you can visit virtually anywhere:
The Wonder Weeks App is a favorite of Chicago Market Leader Jill Badlotto. This worldwide bestselling baby app is a personalized daily calendar of your baby’s development that will keep you informed about the (mental) leaps and bounds and the fussy phases of your baby — any time of day or night.
Stay tuned for for more the Bump Club and Beyond Team. We’ll be providing you many ideas for things to do over the next few weeks when we’re home with our kids right here. Check it out for ways to keep busy, Amazon Prime haul for keeping kids entertained, 101 Movies for Parents, online activities, virtual fitness and MORE! We’ll be updating our ideas for you and your family daily.