Confessions of a Queenstown Dad | April 2020

Confessions of a Queenstown Dad | April 2020 1602 1773 The Flyer Magazine

with Shaun Vining

As I sit here in self isolation – not because of Covid-19 but I’m hiding from the kids, I’m reminded, that my wife and I chose to have four children. Luckily I like them and for the most part they are pretty good kids. However, if I have to home school them for a period of time because of the Covid-19 virus then I need to have some tricks up my sleeve. So here are my tips for you that hopefully help. First, I claim that I have not invented any of these activities as I think it’s better to adapt other people’s (who are smarter than me) ideas.

Use this website, www.kiwifamilies.co.nz as they have heaps of activities for all ages and ideas to keep the kids and yourself busy.

Here are the ones that I have used that I believe are a good distraction and give you time to think of the next thing while they are busy.

Give the kids a bucket or plastic bag (jokes, what’s a plastic bag?).

Send them on their bikes, or to walk, to collect two blue things, one leaf, something that reminds you of an animal, etc.

If they are old enough they can use a phone/camera and you give them a list of things to take a photo of. Numbers, signs, trees, flowers, etc.

You can do this from around the home, or garden, or park, or wherever.

The next one is an inside one.

Send the kids into one room and get them to count to 30. Then tell them they need to find you, but they can’t make sounds when they are doing it. You need to do three rounds of this to make it work well. Making sure they don’t make sounds is important. On the fourth round tell them this one will be the “prize” round. When they are counting you hop in the car and go for a coffee. You’ll have about 30 minutes, before they figure out you’re not at home.

Finally, remember that we will get through this, mostly because at times like this remember Queenstown is a caring place. A place of adventurers and a place of people who take risks every day. So take a risk, learn who your neighbours are, see if they need anything. Also try and buy as much local as you can.

Stay safe.

Clean your hands.

It’ll get better.