With schools closed and many workplaces instituting mandatory work-from-home policies, families across the country are finding themselves at home together for the foreseeable future. With extra-curricular activities cancelled, public libraries closed, and recommendations to stay away from parks and play structures, many parents are finding their go-to screen-free activities are no longer an option. So what is a parent or grandparent to do?
While we are fortunate that there are so many entertainment options and resources available online, you may not want your lasting memories of this pandemic to be of movie marathons and constantly refreshing your news feed. In fact, this can be a wonderful opportunity to incorporate more prayer and faith-filled activities into your daily life! We’ve compiled some screen-free activities that will help keep you sane and make this time of uncertainty a time when you and your family can grow in holiness together.
School and work provide a great amount of structure to our daily lives. When we’re at home it can be difficult to stay focused without the routine and structure that we’re used to. One way to add some structure is to build your day around a framework of prayer. Decide what time you want to start your day, set an alarm, and begin your day with the Morning Offering. Set an alarm for noon and pray the Angelus. At 3:00 p.m. when the afternoon doldrums kick in, pour yourself a cup of coffee and pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet.
If you don’t know the prayers by heart and want to keep this time screen-free, the Relevant Radio® App offers these prayers (and many more!) in an audio format. Download them and pray along with us throughout the day.
If your kids are looking for something to engage their minds, you can help them learn screen-free by turning on a podcast. There are a number of podcasts that are appropriate for Catholic kids, and can help them grow in both knowledge and virtue! Catholic Sprouts is a daily podcast for Catholics kids, and every episode concludes with a challenge to help them apply what they learned and grow in virtue and holiness. Another option is Saint Stories for Kids, a short weekly podcast that introduces kids to different saints by telling stories from their lives. You might even discover some new-to-you saints yourself!
If you usually tune-in to Relevant Radio on your commute to work or school, you can still stay up-to-date on your favorite shows from home by subscribing to our podcasts! Get the latest news from a trusted source by subscribing to The Patrick Madrid Show, The Drew Mariani Show™, and A Closer Look™. Take this opportunity to learn about the Catholic faith by subscribing to Go Ask Your Father™ or Father Simon Says™. And receive spiritual guidance during this time of uncertainty by subscribing to The Inner Life® and St. Joseph’s Workshop. There’s something for everyone and you can listen anytime, anywhere!
Back to Basics
With many of your usual activities cancelled, it’s a great opportunity to have some good old-fashioned fun. Read (or re-read) the books you have in your house. Order some Catholic activity books, like Catholic Funny Fill-Ins or the Holy Heroes Lenten Adventure. Take a walk outside and soak in God’s creation. Play a board game or a card game. Build a fort with the couch cushions. Have an indoor picnic. Blow up some balloons and play a game of can’t-touch-the-ground. Think of how you filled summer break during your childhood (when most activities were screen-free) and recreate them so your kids will have those cherished memories for themselves.
For more on being quarantined as a family, and how to talk to your kids about COVID-19, check out this episode of Morning Air®