Why are we all stuck inside?

How to use this kit

This kit provides activities to help answer your little kids' questions about the Coronavirus. We intend for this to be a jumping off point for your creativity, so adjust for your kid's personality and what you have on hand.

 

There are four sections in the kit. In each section you'll find Coronavirus questions followed by related activities to help explain the answer to your little kids. Activities will get your kids moving, crafting, and learning!

Tag @whyareweallstuckinside in your pictures (wins AND fails!) Have fun!

Activity Menu

 

Germ Basics

What is a virus?

That’s a tough question! There are a lot of different types of germs, but a virus usually...

 

Is really small but has a funky shape

(Activity 1 - Corona crown)

 

Jumps from people who are near each other (Activity 2 - The virus jumps!)

Can transfer across different types of animals

(Activity 3 - Contaminato)

 

Can infect people and make them feel sick

(Activity 4 - The Wiggle Bug)

 

Gets in your body through your nose or mouth (Activity 5 - Block it out)


Do a lot of people have it?

(Activity 6 - Exponential growth)

What is the coronavirus? 

Coronavirus is a new kind of germ that is traveling around the world and making people sick.  Can you say coronavirus?  

 

Here's a hint. It's 2 words put together: Corona (which means crown in Spanish) and Virus (a type of germ that's tough to stop and causes the cold and flu).  

 

A germ is something that is reeeeeally tiny, but it can make people feel very sick. 

The coronavirus has its name because when you look through a microscope, the germ has spikes that make it look like a crown, or corona. 

Activity: A corona crown

Mode: Art

Time: 20 min

 

What is the coronavirus?

1. A corona crown

What You Need

Two pieces of paper

Scissors

 

Crayons or markers

 

Stickers/other decorations

 

Tape or glue 

How To Play

1. Design and cut out your corona crown. Use our crown pattern below as a guide, or make your own similar design.

2. Decorate your corona crown in Spanish! Use some crayons or stickers to decorate your corona crown with jewels, shapes, and lots of different colors.  

 

3. Practice saying the colors of your corona crown in Spanish:

 

Gold = Dorado (Doh-rah-doh)

Blue = Azul (Ah-sool)

Green = Verde (Vehr-day)

Red = Rojo (Roh-hoh)

Yellow = Amarillo (Ah-mah-ree-yoh) 

Purple = Morado (Moh-rah-doh)

Pink = Rosado (Roh-sah-doh)

Basic Crown Template

Advanced scissor skills Template

Keep the fun going:

Design corona crowns for all the members of your family

Practice the colors in Spanish around the house

Pretend to be a favorite character who wears a crown 

Parental guidance: If your kid doesn’t know what a microscope is, use a camera’s zoom function or binoculars to show them how different types of machines can help you see things bigger and smaller.

Why are we all stuck inside?

Are you wondering why we’re all staying inside all the time?  

 

All your friends are inside with their families, too.    

 

People all around the world are staying inside their houses.  

 

We’re staying inside to stay far away from other people to help stop the spread of coronavirus. 

Activity: The virus jumps!

Mode: Movement

Time: 5 min

 

Why are we all stuck inside?

2. The virus jumps!

What You Need

1 grown up and 1 kid

 

1 ball 

How To Play

1.  Stand right in front of each other, with the grown-up holding the ball

 

2. Pass the ball back and forth -- it’s easy right?!

3. Count how many times you can pass it back and forth

4. After 2 (or how ever many times is fun), take a step back away from each other

5. Now pass the ball again -- is it still easy?

6. Keep taking steps back and passing the ball

7. Once you’re so far away you can’t pass it successfully, you’ve answered the question!

This is why we want to stay away from each other. If someone has the virus, it can jump from them to someone else near them. The farther away we are from each other, the harder it is for the virus to reach us. 

Parental guidance: After you’ve finished the ball exercise, encourage your kid to jump like a virus.  Put a piece of tape on the floor and see how far each member of the family can jump. Repeat each day! 

Where did the coronavirus come from? How did it start? 

Nobody is exactly sure where the coronavirus came from and how it started, but scientists think that a bat had the coronavirus first. 

 

The bat had the virus in its body, but it may not have gotten sick from it.

 

Then the bat came into contact with other animals and even humans that never had the coronavirus. But it makes humans sick.

 

Viruses don’t live long. They make copies of themselves and jump from one animal to another, looking for new places to live. 

 

But scientists can make a cure that keeps us safe from the virus.

Activity: Contaminato

Mode: Experimentation

Time: 20 min

 

Where did the coronavirus come from? How did it start?

3. Contaminato

What You Need

Quantities vary by group size:

Pasta

A tomato

Tomato sauce

Whatever else you want to put in your pasta (veggies, etc)

A large saucepan with a tight fitting lid

Masking tape (optional)

How To Play

We’re going to make our lunch/dinner with this activity!

1. Start boiling water for pasta

2. Cut the top off your tomato and ask your kid to hollow it out using a spoon.

 

3. When you finish it should look like a Jack-o-lantern without a face.

 

4. The tomato is the virus “host”--like the bat!

 

5. Heat up your tomato sauce and prepare any other ingredients that are going in your pasta

 

6. Boil and drain the pasta

 

7. Transfer the pasta and other veggies to a new saucepan (to avoid burning little fingers) 

 

8. Fill your hollow tomato with as much sauce as will fit in it. 

 

9. Put the tomato “host” with its sauce “virus” into the saucepan with the pasta. Make sure the lid is on tight and seal it with tape if desired.

 

10. Now have your kid shake it up!  

 

11. Open the lid.  What happened? The virus came out of the host and infected all the pasta and vegetables! Kind of like the bat that came into contact with other animals.

12. Add as much additional sauce as you’d like and have dinner!

What does it mean to be infected? 

An infection means that something that isn’t supposed to be in your body is in there.  

 

Different infections cause different reactions (we call these symptoms).  

 

If you fall down and scrape your knee, and you don’t keep the scrape clean, it could get infected. The infection on your knee might turn red.

 

Some infections, like the coronavirus, can pass from one person to another. So if one person has a cough, and they pass the virus to another person, that person might start coughing, too.      

Activity: The Wiggle Bug

Mode: Movement

Time: 10 min

 

What does it mean to be infected? 

4. The Wiggle Bug

What You Need

NOTHING!  

 

This is a good activity to do with all the people stuck inside with you. 

How To Play

Let’s show what it looks like to pass the bug!

 

1. Clear a big space and move anything easily breakable away. 

 

2. Gather your players--everyone in the house!

 

The first wiggle bug:

 

3. One grown-up starts the game: Make up a movement--something easy to copy, like wiggling your hips, and as you move, say “I’ve got the Wiggle Bug!

4. Now everyone else, try to stay away from the Wiggle Bug as it tries to catch everyone in the family.

5. When the wiggle bug touches someone else, that person should start wiggling too. All of the wigglers can now catch other members of the family until the whole group is wiggling.

 

6. Wiggle around the room! Count to 10 and then someone new is the Wiggle Bug.

 

The new wiggle bug

 

7. The new Wiggle Bug has to make up a new move (disco arms, jazz hands, hula dancing are all good options). 

8. Once everyone has had a turn to be the Wiggle Bug, turn on a favorite song and dance along. When the song is over the game is over!

Join in the fun! 

It's almost a manicure! Right!?

And you used to pay to work out!

Why are people wearing masks?

People are wearing masks to cover their nose and their mouth.  

 

You use your nose to breathe and smell things, and when you do that, you can breathe in air that might have the virus in it.  

 

You use your mouth to eat and breathe too. You could also eat something that the virus might have touched.    

 

So when people are near each other, they cover their nose and mouth with a mask so they don’t breathe air with the virus in it and so the virus doesn’t enter their body. 

Activity: Block it out!

Mode: Art + Imagination

Time: 15 min crafting + playtime

 

Why are people wearing masks?

5. Block it out!

What You Need

An old t-shirt

(Size 3T works great for our 1.5-4.5 year old testers)

Decorating materials (optional)

How To Play

How To Play

Make your mask:

 

1. Grown-up, help your kid cut out their mask from the old t-shirt using our guide below. This is obviously a toy, not a medical implement. 

2. Decorate the mask with stickers or markers

 

3. Put it on! Make sure it’s covering your kid's nose and your mouth.

 

4. What does it feel like to wear the mask? 

 

Experiment with your mask:

 

5. Snacktime: Try eating your snack without moving your mask away from your mouth.  What a silly idea!  Why didn’t that work?

   

[Because the food won’t be able to get through your mask!]  Your food is too big to squeeze through the mask, like most viruses.

6. Funky smells: Collect 2-3 things that have strong smells (coffee? An orange slice? Spices like rosemary?) and bring them to the table. 

 

7. Smell each of them without your mask.  Is it easy to smell them? 

 

8. Now put your mask back on. Try smelling them again. Is it easier or harder to smell the smells?

1. Lay t-shirt flat

2. Cut off sides

3. Unfold

4. Cut

5. Tie on

Smells can sneak through. Can you see a smell? They’re kind of like germs--invisible! So masks aren’t total protection--some things can still get through them. ​ But masks are still important--they help keep people safe from a lot of things that can't get through!

Parental guidance: Once the mask is on, milk it!  Maybe your kid is a pirate now? Maybe they want to create a pirate outfit to go with the mask?

Do a lot of people have it? 

The virus is spreading so fast because people can give it to each other very easily.  

 

Someone who has the virus can easily give it to two other people.

 

When someone new gets the virus, they can get sick also.  

 

Let’s try an experiment to see how much the coronavirus spreads!

Activity: Exponential growth

Mode: Experimentation

Time: 15 min

 

Do a lot of people have it?

6. Exponential growth

What You Need

Post-its/stickers

A writing utensil (optional)

How To Play

1. Grown-up places post-its/stickers/pieces of tape all around the windows/walls of one room. (5-7 stickers is a good number to start with, depending on how high your kid can count) 

2. Look, these are all the people who have the virus.

3. Now, let’s say each of them give the virus to two more people.

4. Put two post-its right next to each patient that got infected.

 

5. Now let’s say each of THEM give the virus to two MORE people.

[Repeat exercise]

6. Now count up all the post-its (if you want to have your kid practice writing their numbers they can label each post-it)...There are so many!  When we started, there were only __ people with the virus.  But now there are __! That’s why it’s important to stop even one person from giving the virus to his friends. 

 

Secondary activity: curing people

7. Have your kid run around to each cluster, draw a shape on each post-it to “cure” it (skip if you’re nervous your kid’s going to write on the wall), and then pick up each post-it and bring them back to the grown-up. Set a timer.

Let’s see how fast you can do it!

The virus can spread very quickly and make a lot of people sick very fast!  That’s why we’re all staying inside.

The new normal

 

Why can I still see some people outside?

While some of us can work from home or stay safe inside, our neighbors have really important jobs that mean they have to leave.  

 

Some examples: Doctors and nurses have to go to the hospital to help people get better.

 

Police officers have to keep the streets safe and in some places their job is even to make sure people stay inside.  

 

Supermarket cashiers have to make sure that everyone can get food to eat at home.   Who else needs to go outside to do their jobs? 

Activity: Coronabadge

Mode: Art

Time: 30 min

 

Why can I see still see some people outside?

7. Coronabadge

What You Need

Paper

 

Scissors

Markers/crayons

Tape 

How To Play

Have you seen the badges that policemen wear? They help us know who they are.  Sometimes, people get badges when they do a good job at something  

 

(Use an example your child might be familiar with, like scouting, the military, or a sticker they might get at school for a good deed)

We’re going to make badges for those people that have to keep going to work every day. Who are some of those people?

  •  

  • Doctors, Nurses, Policy officers, Truck drivers...

    •  

1.   Help your child cut out small shapes as badges.

2.   Draw and decorate the badge for people who are doing important jobs

 

Educational moment: Help your child think through why some jobs are essential. What are these people doing?

 

3.   Make badges for people in your home, including the things they are good at. For example, Dad might get a tomato badge for his cooking skills.

 

4.   Use tape to attach the badges to the people in your household.

 

These badges can be gifts for anyone, or they can be used in your next role-playing

Grown-ups, you can add your job to the list too--we know it's important!

What can our family do to help with the Coronavirus? 

The best thing we can do is stay at home until the people in charge tell us it’s ok to go back outside again.

 

That way the people who still have to be outside don’t get sick. 

 

But there are still ways for us to be helpful heroes.  


What are some ways that we can all be helpful heroes?

Activity: Helpful Heroes

Mode: Art

Time: 20 min of crafting, plus playtime

 

What can our family do to help with the Coronavirus?

8. Helpful Heroes

What You Need

A largecloth (~3 feet square) or a crib sheet. Even a towel could work!

Safety pins or needle and thread if you’re making a permanent cape

How To Play

Let's be superheroes today!

 

1.  What do superheroes have in common?

2. They wear a belt!

3. They wear their underwear outside of their pants! (Don't worry, nobody is going to see us today)

4. They have a CAPE!! Let's make one!

 

Follow instructions below to make a cape.

n

5. Once your cape is ready to go, talk about what your imaginary and real-life super powers might be.​ Super-cuddler? Super pancake maker?

~6 in/ 15 cm

safety pins

pins to prevent tripping

1. Lay out fabric

2. Fold

3. Make sleeves

4. Adjust to size

In our house, everyone knows that superheroes don't whine!

What’s going on outside? 

Even though we’re stuck inside most of the time, there’s still a lot going on outside.

 

Are animals and plants staying inside? Of course not, they live outside! The coronavirus doesn’t affect them.

 

Some people are walking outside: what are they doing? Where are they going? 

 

Are cars passing by? 

 

Let’s take a look to see what’s going on out there!

Activity: Bingo on the window

Mode: Imagination

Time: 5-7 min

 

What's going on outside?

9. Bingo on the window

What You Need

Windows with panes (or masking tape to make sections)

Post-its or dry erase markers

How To Play

1. Find a window where your kid can look out

 

[If there are panes, great! If not, use the tape to

make panes or sections on your window.]

2. What types of things are passing by your window? 

Cars? Birds? The color yellow?

3. Pick a few items to be part of your Bingo on the Window--make them relevant to your neighborhood.

4. Now set a timer for 1-3 minutes looking outside the window. 

Each time one of your assigned items shows up in one of your Bingo boxes, add a post-it or draw a mark on the window. 

 

5. See how many marks you can get before the timer goes off!

 

6. You can play multiple rounds at different times of day. What’s going on out there? Is it different than this morning or last night? How many dogs did we see?

7. Level-up! When you’re ready to reset the categories, teach your kid how to wash the window, so they can see even more next time!

What kind of bingo do you want to play? 

Temper tantrums per room?

Spills by color?

Make your own bingo board!

Parental guidance: Another way to play this game is to cover the pane with sudsy soap instead of "checking it off" and then wiping off all the soap suds once the game is complete.

Why  did ___ get canceled? 

I know you’re disappointed that ___ got canceled. It was canceled because we’re all stuck inside and can’t meet up to play.

 

A lot of people around the world are disappointed that things they were excited about got canceled because of the coronavirus. 

 

One big thing that got canceled is the Olympics. 

 

The Olympics happens every 4 years. People from all different countries come together to play sports and games. People practice a lot to be in the Olympics. They must be very disappointed that the Olympics are not going to happen this year.

Activity: Coronavirus Olympics

Mode: Movement

Time: 30 min

 

Why did ___ get canceled?

10. Coronavirus Olympics

What You Need:

Variable

Books (a.k.a. weights)

Pillows (a.k.a. hurdles)

Tape (a.k.a. balance beam)

Pot lid (a.k.a. a target)

How To Play

Create Olympics events in your living room. Embellish based on what you know your kid or family likes. Here are a few to start with:

Track and Field

 

1. Lift your knees up high, one at a time, and FAST! How many times can you lift your knees in 30 seconds? I'm setting a timer... GO!

2. Place a small object on the floor. Have your kid jump back and forth over the object. How many times can you jump and forth in 30 seconds. Go!

 

Archery:

3. Make a target by learning a pot lid against the wall. Take turns rolling a ball toward the target from across the room. See who comes the closest!

 

Gymnastics

4. Make a "balance beam" using a piece of tape, toy train tracks, or something else. Have the kids walk along, jump on one foot, and lift their legs up high as they balance! 

5. Help your kid do handstands against the wall. Time how long they can stay up without your help. 

Parental guidance: Use your imagination! How can you adapt your favorite sport for your living room?

Grown-ups, this should make them go down easier at naptime!

Is there anything GOOD about the coronavirus? 

It’s always nice to look on the bright side!  It’s fun to hang out with our family, don’t you think? I’m having fun spending more time with you!

 

When we have fewer people to visit and fewer places to go, we can focus better on things. 

 

Another thing that’s happening is that while humans are staying in their houses, nature is finding places to grow where it usually doesn’t have space.

 

Looking out the window, can you see or hear any ways that nature is finding space? Is spring coming? Are plants or leaves growing?

 

Can you focus better on the birds chirping when you don’t hear lots of cars going by? 

Activity: Grow a plant

Mode: Experimentation

Time: 10 min + daily monitoring

Grown-ups, do your best to sound sincere here!

 

Is there anything GOOD about the coronavirus?

11. Grow a plant

What You Need

Clear cup or bowl

Piece of tape

Marker

Water

A vegetable clipping

  • Base of celery, fennel bulb, head of lettuce, or green onions (with roots) 

  • The top of turnip, parsnip, or beet

  • 1-3 stems of cilantro, basil, parsley

How To Play

1. Pick your vegetable clipping

2. Find a clear cup or bowl that will hold your clipping and fill it with water

  • Celery, Fennel, Green Onions, Beets, Turnips, Parsnips and Lettuce should all be covered with water

  • The Cilantro, Basil, or Parsley should sit in water but their leaves should stay dry

3. Mark where the water line is with tape or a marker

4. Have your kid practice their letters by making a label for your plant. 

5. Place your cup or bowl in a sunny place

6. Let's check on it everyday

  • Did the plant grow?

  • Did the water disappear? Where did it go?

  • Add water to replace what was absorbed

7. Once it's ready, cook something together using what you grew!

While the coronavirus is happening outside and we're all stuck inside, things are still growing!

Is the coronavirus all over the world? 

Yeah! They have it in Asia, Europe, North America, South America, Africa… 

 

But not yet in Antarctica! It’s hard for people to get it all the way down there.

 

Do you know where all these places are? 

 

It spread because so many people love to visit new places!

 

Do you remember the last time you visited a new place? 

 

We can’t go anywhere new right now, so let’s take a trip around our home!

Activity: Souvenir relay

Mode: Movement

Time: 15 min

 

Is the coronavirus all over the world?

12. Souvenir relay

What You Need

3-5 “Souvenirs” - could be real souvenirs from past trips, stuffed animals, toys

 

Obstacles for your kid:

Pillows to jump over

Tables to crawl under

A line of tape to walk along (maybe in a zig zag?)

How To Play

1. Put 1 souvenir in each room. Each room is a place you’ve visited. 

 

2. Design an obstacle course with your kid. Walk through it, make sure they understand what they’re supposed to do at each step. 

 

3. Practice it with them!

 

4. Add obstacles to jump over or tables to crawl under to make it a bit more challenging (and last longer). 

 

5. Now from the starting line, the kid is going to race and pick up 1 souvenir at a time and bring it back. Keep going until all the souvenirs are back with the grown-up. Once they’re all in one place, it’s time to take the souvenirs back to where they came from. Again one at a time!

 

6. Use a stopwatch, see if your kid can get faster and faster! 

When you travel, you bring things home with you. Some people brought the coronavirus with them when they traveled, and that's how it spread around the world.

Parental guidance: Another answer to this question could be to have themed dinners based on countries you know the coronavirus has visited.

If you figure out how to make a relay last indefinitely, share your secrets with us and we will bow down to you!

I'm bored! Can I have a new toy?

Staying inside is kind of like going on an adventure.  You have to think ahead and plan for what you need, like food, clothes, or toys.

 

We can have adventures inside without having to buy new things. 

 

How about if we make a new space for you to have an adventure?

Activity: Build a fort

Mode: Imagination

Time: 15 min + playtime

 

I'm bored! Can I have a new toy?

13. Build a fort

What You Need

Pillows

Blankets

Chairs/Sofa

Whatever your kid “needs”

How To Play

1. Do you want a place all your own to hang out? Let’s make a fort!

2. Wherever you can give your little kid a place to hang-out and play, use some chairs as structures and drape some blankets over top. Add comfort and ambiance with pillows, decorations, etc.

3. What do you want to keep with you?

  • What are your favorite snacks?

  • What toys do you want in your fort?

  • Do you want some books?

  • How about a change of clothes?

4. Once your kid is in the fort, let them tell you the rules...

  • What are the rules of the fort?

  • Am I allowed inside? Why?

Sometimes just having your own space can be an adventure.  You don't always need new things for things to feel new.

Parental guidance: Maybe the fort can become a hospital?

 

Keeping people healthy

Where do people go when they get sick? 

If someone gets very sick with the coronavirus, they will go to the hospital.

 

Have you ever been to a hospital?  What are the things you can find in a hospital?

 

There are doctors and nurses.

There are chairs and beds for people to be in while they are getting better.

 

There might be chairs, sinks, medicines, and masks. What else do you think you’d find at a hospital?

Activity: Hospital design

Mode: Art

Time: 15 min

 

Where do people go when they get sick?

14. Hospital design

What You Need

Drawing supplies (paper + crayons/markers or paints)

How To Play

You’re going to be drawing lots of different parts of the hospital. These are some suggestions--but you can let  your kid take the lead. Aim for 3-5 drawings before they run out of steam.

1. Let’s draw the outside of your hospital. What do you think a hospital looks like? Is it a big or a small building? Why? Does it have windows?

 

2. Now (new piece of paper), let’s draw the inside of your hospital. What’s the first thing that happens when you  go to the hospital? 

  • Maybe it’s the waiting room. Draw who you think is in the waiting room. Why do you think they came to the hospital?

3. (New piece of paper) Who works in the hospital? What do they use?

  • Doctors, Nurses, Receptionists, Janitors, Cafeteria workers

  • You’ve been to the doctor. What does the doctor have? A thermometer? Band-aids? That thing they wear around their neck? (That’s a stethoscope, it’s to listen to your heart)

4. Does your hospital have beds? Why? What else does it have? Why?

How can we help the sick people get better?

One thing that the people in charge are doing is making sure that things are in the right place where they can get used for the right things.

For example, hospital need medicines and masks. Factories need materials, like plastic, to make the masks.

This is just like our house. All the things in the house need to be in the right place so that when we need to use them, they are there for us. 

Imagine if all your blocks were on the top shelf in the kitchen. How could you play with them?

Or if the cheese was in the bathtub! What would we do when we wanted to make a grilled cheese? What would happen if you tried to take a bath?

Activity: Supply chain hustle

Mode: Imagination

Time: 15 min

 

How can we help the sick people get better?

15. Supply chain hustle

What You Need

Groceries or something else that needs to be put away (toys, laundry...)

How To Play

1. Set the grocery bags on the counter.

 

2. Go through the groceries and think of some silly ideas:

  • “What do you think would happen if you put the eggs in the dishwasher?” 

  • “What if you were on the potty, but the toilet paper was in the sock drawer?”  

3. As you play the pretend grocery game, have the kid take the lead on finding the right place for everything in the bags.

4. Keep it going with positive reinforcement when things are in the right place!

  • “These onions are right next to the chopping board.  It makes it faster for me to cook dinner.” 

  • “Oh, good thing your teddy is already waiting for you next to your pillow. Imagine if he were under the couch!”

Parental guidance: No, we don't think your kid will fall for this trick hook, line and sinker.  But all our testers played along for at least a few minutes!

If this one’s a hit, congrats, you’ve achieved the highest order of parental achievement: kid-driven organization!

Why is the coronavirus dangerous?

Many people catch the coronavirus and they’re just fine.  But some people have to go to the hospital.  

 

At the hospital, doctors and nurses help people who are sick to get better.

 

Doctors and nurses use things like band-aids, medicines, and special machines to help people feel better.

 

If too many people have the same sickness, like coronavirus, doctors and nurses might run out of the things they need to help people get better.

Activity: Cure the toys!

Mode: Cleaning

Time: 15 min

 

Why is the Coronavirus dangerous?

16. Cure the toys!

What You Need

Toys--plastic is best, because you’re going to wash them!

A bucket, sink or bathtub

Soap and water

A sponge or washcloth

A towel

How To Play

How To Play

1. Bathtime is a good time for this activity. 

 

2. Let’s imagine some of your toys have the coronavirus!  

3. This bucket (sink/bathtub) can be the hospital, and you can be the doctor. 

4. Why don’t you go get some of your toys? How can we get the virus off your toys? 

5. Give your kid the soap and washcloth. Show them how to clean the “virus” off all their toys. Give them the toys one or two at a time at first, and then give them a lot of toys at once to clean.  

 

6. Make it silly! If it's a mess, it's a clean mess.  But make sure to “cure” all the toys.

 

7. When you’re done “curing” all the toys, ask what to do next. See what your kid says. 

8. Lay them out on a towel to “rest and recuperate”/dry. 

When you had just a few toys to cure, what was it like? 

When your hospital started filling up, what was that like? 

What if you ran out of soap, or water? How would you cure all the toys? 

 

This is what it’s like when too many people have the coronavirus.  It’s too hard for the hospital to cure them all at the same time! So it's important we all do our part to stop the spread of the virus.

Parental guidance: Remember that if this gets messy, all you have to do is wipe up some soap & water.  Let your kid get a little bit crazy and blow off some steam!

Parallel play: Now’s a good time for a facemask.  Get that virus out of your pores, grown-ups!

Why are we washing our hands so much? 

Another way to get the coronavirus is if you touch a place where there’s a little bit of virus, and then you touch your mouth or your nose where the coronavirus can get inside your body.    

 

So it’s very important to wash our hands with soap and water to make sure the coronavirus doesn’t stick to us. 

Activity: Super soap!

Mode: Experimentation

Time: 15 min

 

Why are we washing our hands so much? 

17. Super soap!

What You Need

A small bowl

 

Soap

Water

A sink  

Pepper 

How To Play

Dirty hands + pepper = pepper stuck to your hands

1.  Fill your bowl with water and set it down.

2.  Now, shake lots of pepper into the water. Today, we’re pretending the pepper is the coronavirus!

3. Stick your finger into the water.  What happens? Did you get pepper on your finger?

Clean hands + pepper = no pepper on your hands

4. Now, let’s wash our hands with soap and water. The right way to wash your hands is for at least 30 seconds.  Practice singing happy birthday (twice!) while you wash your hands. Make sure to get all that pepper off! Make sure you get soap all over your hands, the front, the back and in between all your fingers.  When you’re done,  rinse them with water.

 

5. Now, dry them off, and let’s go back to your bowl of water and pepper. 

 

6. Stick your finger back in.

 

7. Now what happened?  Did you get pepper on your finger? (hopefully, no) Where did all the pepper go? (Far away to the other side) Why do you think that happened?!

The virus tries to avoid things it doesn’t like, like soap.  One thing that can help keep the virus away is when we wash our hands with soap and water! 

Join in the fun! It's almost a manicure! Right!?

Parental guidance: Hand-washing while singing can spur some tangential conversations like: What other songs (about water?) could we sing while we wash our hands? 

Join in the fun! It’s almost a manicure! Right?!

Why can’t we visit ___?

Remember we learned about how the virus jumps, and how it can make people feel sick.

 

If ___ gets sick, they won’t feel well, would you want that?

 

But it IS nice for people to know you’re thinking of them when you can’t see them. What are some ways you can make sure people know you’re still thinking of them?

 

See what your kid says. If they don’t suggest it themselves, you can suggest “Should we make them presents?”

Activity: Craft inspiration

Mode: Art

Time: Variable

 

Why can't we visit ___?

18. Craft inspiration

What You Need

Whatever craft supplies you have on hand

Some ideas:

Toilet paper rolls

Construction paper

Magazine pages

Newspapers

Scissors

Glue/Tape

Markers

Pipe cleaners

Googly eyes

Stickers

Suggestions

1. Corona badges (from question 8) to send your very important neighbors

 

2. Paper flowers to send to people in the hospital

 

3. Design a new virus--maybe it’s the wiggle bug or another funny bug!

 

4. Turn your empty tissue boxes into monsters

 

5. Toilet roll binoculars to help you get a closer a look at what’s going on outside

For all you TP hoarders out there, do yourself a favor and look up Toilet Paper Roll Crafts.

What do YOU know about the coronavirus?

Grown-ups, we’re turning this around and letting your kid be the expert for once! 

 

This activity is an opportunity for your kid to tell you everything they’ve learned about the coronavirus. 

 

It can also be an opportunity for you to learn more about what your kid is thinking and feeling.

Activity: Sock Puppet Expert

Mode: Imagination

Time: 15 min

 

What do YOU know about the coronavirus?

19. Sock Puppet Expert

What You Need

One old sock per participant

Items to decorate--buttons, glue, yarn, or stickers if your kid won’t freak out when they come unstuck

How To Play

1. Lay out your socks 

 

2. Decorate them however you’d like.  Name them! Then put them on your hands and start talking!

 

3. The grown-up can kick it off. Use a funny voice, and play it up! Ask “Why are we all stuck inside?”

 

4. Follow the conversation from there. Think like a kid. Ask your kid follow-up questions they might ask, like “is the virus big or small?” “Then why can’t I see it?”

 

5. See what they say. Are  you impressed with what they’ve learned? Tell them so!

Parental guidance: Level up! Introduce your sock to friends on a video call!

Does a third puppet get decorated? As the virus or as a doctor, perhaps?

 

Going back outside

What are we going to do today?

By now, we’ve made a bunch of crafts and accessories to play with. 

 

Do you like wearing your mask or your crown? Who else wears masks? Why do people wear crowns?

 

Which game was your favorite? Should we play it again?

 

Dress up with your friends (over video) and teach them how to play your favorite game.

Activity: Corona Costume

Mode: Imagination

Time: 15 min

 

What are we going to do today?

20. Corona Costume

What You Need

Coronacrown (Activity 1)

Cape (Activity 9 - Helpful Heroes)

Mask (Activity 6 - Block it out!)

Coronabadges (Activity 8)

Sock puppets (Activity 20 - Sock Puppet Expert)

How To Play

Put on all your new accessories! 

Take a picture or a video!  Tag us in it! (@whyareweallstuckinside)  

 

Now make a new game!

When can we go back outside? 

While we’re inside keeping the virus to ourselves a lot of things are happening.

 

Doctors and nurses are healing people who already have the virus, and cleaning up all the virus that people have.

 

Once the people in charge think the virus is mostly gone, we’ll be able to go back outside.

Activity: Scrubbing away the virus

Mode: Cleaning

Time: 15 min

 

When can we go outside?

21. Scrubbing away the virus

What You Need

Tape

Cleaning supplies

How To Play

1. What room is most “infected” with the virus? That’s the one to tackle!

 

2. Make a few squares of tape on the floor--for your child to tackle. The rest of the space is for the grown-ups to clean!

 

3. Name the different places you’ve designated. If you’re cleaning the kitchen (where you spend 93% of the day preparing snacks anyway), it might be “Cornerville” “Oven’s front lawn” etc.

4. Let’s pretend the virus has infected the floor! Let’s work together to get it all out!

 

5. Put on some music and get to cleaning!

 

6. Once a square is scrubbed clean, declare that

area “virus free!”

 

7. Once the whole room is done, choose a way to celebrate that room’s cleanliness.

Parental guidance: If your kids are already used to helping clean, great! If not, have faith!  They are fully capable of helping out. The worst that can happen is you have a lot of water to mop up.

Well, it's all about how you frame it.

If you believe scrubbing the floor is fun, maybe just maybe your kid will too?!

I'm sick of staying inside!!

This is a very strange time we're living in.  

 

Probably everybody feels ready to go back out.  

 

We might feel like we’re constantly in each other’s space.

 

It’s okay to get frustrated. Let’s find a way to let it out and have some fun!

Activity: Escape valve

Mode: Movement

Time: 5 min

 

I'm sick of staying inside!!

22. Escape Valve

What You Need

Nothing, really. A room with a door.

How To Play

1. Sometimes you just want to unleash your frustration. And while you’re stuck inside, we have fewer opportunities for letting our energy out.

 

2. Grown-up: decide what “semi-destructive” activity you can permit on a one-time only basis in your household, or a rule that you can break. Do it!

Some suggestions:

  • All go in the bathroom at the same time and scream at the top of your lungs for 30 seconds (maybe give the neighbors a heads up)

  • Have a pillow fight

  • Bang on all the pots and pans

  • Tear up a stack of magazines

  • Fill up balloons with water (in the bathtub!) and break them. 

 

3. After everyone’s calmed down, explain that it’s ok to be frustrated. We just have to find ways to show it that everyone can understand.

How do you cure the coronavirus?

It takes a lot of research to figure out how to make the right medicine to cure sicknesses like the coronavirus. 

 

Sometimes the ingredients are everyday things like mold on bread. Sometimes they’re exotic plants found deep in the rainforest.

 

Scientists around the world are working in their labs to make different medicines. When they think they have a good idea, they give them to sick people to test if they get better.

Activity: Lemonade Laboratory

Mode: Experimentation

Time: 15 min

 

How do you cure the coronavirus?

23. Lemonade Laboratory

What You Need

Aprons or white button-down shirts for “lab coats” 

3-4 lemons (½ cup)

A juicer, if you have one (otherwise your kid will enjoy squeezing by hand!)

Water (3 cups)

Sugar (½ cup)

How To Play

1. Let’s pretend we’re scientists and put on our lab coats, like the ones working on the cure for the Coronavirus. We’re going to test out making lemonade to see what’s it’s like to do an experiment. 

 

2. Squeeze all the lemons into a glass

  • Measure out ½ a cup of lemon juice

  • Take a spoon and taste the lemon juice -- how does it taste? Do you think we should include something else to make it taste better?

 

3. How about some water?

  • Add 3 cups of water to the ½ cup of lemon juice--let your kid measure and pour!

  • Does it taste different? Does it taste like lemonade?

4. Now, finally, the magic ingredient--sugar!

  • Add ½ cup sugar to the liquid

  • Stir and stir and stir

  • Now let’s taste it! How does that taste? 

Keep tweaking the recipe until you think it’s perfect!

Two shots of vodka should mix in quite nicely for the grown-up version of this potion. 

What happens when the coronavirus goes away? 

 

The people in charge will tell us when they think the coronavirus is gone.

 

Once people aren’t sick anymore and there’s less risk of the virus jumping around from person to person, we’ll be able to go outside again.

 

We’ll be be able to see our friends and family, and people will go back to work and school.

 

But not everything needs to change. We still get to decide how we want our lives to be.

Activity: Emotions check-in

Mode: Imagination

Time: 15 min

What happens when the coronavirus goes away?

24. Emotions check-in

What You Need

A cozy place to sit and have a heart-to-heart

Markers and paper (optional)

How To Play

Parents, use this opportunity as a pulse check, but also to get ideas from your kid for other activities to do, right now or in the future.

1. Is there anything you like better about being stuck inside?

  • Are there some things that you like about being stuck inside?

  • What are they?

  • Guide your kid gently from things like “I love watching more TV” by prompting them with what you like doing with them.

2. What do you miss? 

  • What isn’t fun about being stuck inside? 

  • What are you excited to do again?

  • Grown-ups prompt by telling them what you miss --after all, you’re stuck inside too!

3. What do you wish we could do more of?

  • Ask your child what he’d like to do more of, either while you’re stuck inside or once you can go outside. This could give you some valuable ideas!

 

Optional: Make a list or draw some pictures as you have the conversation

 

Has this ever happened before? 

In the past, there have been other diseases that made a lot of people sick and made them stay in their houses.  

 

One example was the Spanish Flu.  The Spanish Flu happened before grandma and grandpa were even born! Many, many people got very sick [and some of them died], and many of them stayed in their houses because they didn’t want to get sick, just like we're doing now.

How do you think people remember that, if we weren’t there? 

 

Some books tell the story of what happened before, so that people can remember it later. Do we have any books like that?

Another way that people remember things that happened is in a museum. Have we ever been to a museum together?  What was it like? 

 

→ If you have a baby book, look through that, explaining how it’s like a mini-museum. Otherwise, look through pictures on your phone and tell the stories of what happened in each picture.

Activity: Coronavirus Museum/Book

Mode: Art

Time: 30 min each

Has this ever happened before?

25. Coronavirus Museum

What You Need

Art your kid has made since being stuck inside (flat or 3D)

Tape or tacks

Empty boxes

Paper and pens to make display descriptions (optional)

How To Play

1. Where is our museum going to be? Your bedroom? The hallway?

  

2.  Let’s collect all the art that you’ve made since we’ve been stuck inside.  Let’s put it all in one big pile in the space where our museum will be!  

 

3. Now let’s collect the display materials. 

 

4. Museums have all kinds of displays.  Pictures that are flat usually go on the wall, and things that are bigger go in display boxes.

5. How should we group your art?  By color? By when you made it? Or by what you used to make it? (use imagination here)

6. Ok, let’s make our museum!  Stick the pictures on the wall.  Turn the boxes on their sides to display other artifacts, like your crown, your mask, your cape, your sock puppets, and maybe the plant you’ve been growing.  If you want to get really fancy you could adjust lighting to illuminate the art.

7.  Optional: Most museums have labels or descriptions of their art. How many pieces of art do we have in our museum?  Which one do we want people to see first? [Have child use small pieces of paper to write a number for each piece of art]   

 

8. Offer tours of your coronavirus museum via video calls.

9. When it's time to take your museum down, take a video of your kid giving a tour of it, and then proceed to the Coronavirus Book activity below.

We use books and museums to remember things that happened before. This museum will help us remember and share all the things we made while we were stuck inside.

Grown-up: imagine you’re at a gallery opening, take a step back and cock your head as you say something very sophisticated (We're sure your kid will appreciate it). Perhaps, you should have a martini in hand.

Parental guidance: Can you put art on a kid-eye level so the smaller members of your household can more easily see it?

Has this ever happened before?

26. Coronavirus Book

What You Need

Manila envelope or two pieces of cardboard for your cover

Your kid's flat art (5-20 sheets)

Stapler or glue, hole-punch and string

How To Play

Make and decorate the cover of your book

 

1. Either fold a big piece of paper or find a manila folder that’s going to hold all the art

2. Practice letters: give the cover a title, put your name on it, draw the cover illustration

Fill the cover with art

 

3. Now select the drawings you want to include in your book

 

4. Do they all fit? Lay them in an order between the cover like pages in a book

Bind the book together

 

5. Once you have laid all of your pages between the covers, you have to stick them all together

  • Staple or glue all of the pages together like a pamphlet

  • Or put 3  holes in the pages and tie them together with little pieces of string

We use books and museums to remember things that happened before. This book will help us remember and share all the things we made while we were stuck inside.

Grown-ups, A good exercise to work on your counting. How many books will you have to make if this thing goes on much longer? We’ll all be drowning in drawings!

Parental guidance: You can use this opportunity to weed out some drawings from your ever-growing collection 

 

But I still don't get it!

But why did this happen?

 

What will happen if we go outside?

 

Are we going to be okay? Is ___ going to be okay?

 

When can we go outside again?

 

When can I go back to school?

 

Is the coronavirus ever going to leave us alone?

Activity: TBD

Mode: TBD

Time: TBD

But... I still don't get it!

27. TBD

UMMMMMMMMM

I DON'T KNOW!! I GIVE UP!

CONGRATS GROWN-UPS, YOUR KID IS UNSTOPPABLE!! 

Proceed to your preferred distraction or the next activity

What You Need

Google?

TV?

Another snack?

How To Play

That's all for now!

Keep repeating these activities until you’re allowed to go back outside! Any great inspiration for new activities or questions we haven’t answered, please send them our way on Instagram @whyareweallstuckinside or to whyareweallstuckinside@gmail.com! Tag us in your photos and share our kit with your friends.

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