As our children have less social interaction with friends and extended family in the wake of COVID-19, pediatricians are looking at what this may mean for Clark County families on a daily basis. When families are faced with challenges that may include balancing work, school changes or childcare, we are encouraging parents to focus on relational health with their children for short periods each day.
Relational health involves establishing and maintaining meaningful relationships through interactions and connections with others. Benefits of good relational health include feelings of inclusion and worth, support during times of need, personal growth and confidence, and improved communication skills. Providers at Vancouver Clinic are finding new ways to connect with patients using telehealth.
Early literacy and relational health are important to child development. So important that our providers at Vancouver Clinic give books to children at their well child exams from six months to five years of age through the Reach Out and Read program.
A book is an amazing tool that parents can use to promote shared attention with their children. Just taking five minutes to sit and read a book with a child can address the child’s needs for attention and affection. During times of stress or anxiety, children are most in need of the routine and sense of security provided by reading a book with a loved one.
One positive result of the recent pandemic is an increase in availability of some wonderful educational resources for children. If you don’t have many books to read at home, here are some incredible resources for reading and learning online:
Virtual Reading and Live Events
- Érase una vez, Once Upon a Time has children’s stories read in Spanish.
- Digitized editions of more than 4,600 children’s books in 59 languages are available to read online at the International Children’s Digital Library.
- Online Read Alouds by The Big List of Children’s Authors get kids excited about books.
- Open Culture has 200 free resources available for download.
- Storyline Online streams videos featuring actors reading children’s books.
- The StoryTime Family videos range from bedtime stories to stories about social skills and emotions.
- Amazon’s Audible library has free audio books in six languages.
- Brightly Storytime videos has books read aloud for children ages 2-5 years old.
- Kid Lit TV features reading aloud, children’s podcasts, activities and more.
- Save with Stories is all about celebrities having fun reading stories on Instagram.
- Panda Cam at Zoo Atlanta
- Georgia Aquarium’s Ocean Voyager webcam
- San Diego Zoo Live Cams
- Scholastic has created a free Learn at Home environment with day-by-day projects to keep kids reading, thinking, and growing.
- Switcheroozoo allows kids to watch, listen, and play games to learn all about amazing animals.
- PBS Kids and PBS LearningMedia facilitates hanging out with favorite characters all while learning.
- Sesame Street offers a variety of games, coloring pages, videos, and learning resources.
- StarFall offers activities for Pre-K and younger to practice literacy, emerging phonics and reading at home.
- Fun Brain has games to play while practicing math and reading skills.
- Tinkergarten At Home focuses on educational DIY activities and virtual Tinkergarten classes to foster at-home learning that is easy and fun.
Screen Free Activities
- Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood has put together a comprehensive list of screen-free activities.
- 50 Screen Free activities list includes read a book together, put together a puzzle, write letters to people and ask them to write back, help your children write and illustrate a book, and more.
Vancouver Clinic is here to support you as we discover new ways to help create and maintain safe, stable, and nurturing relationships with our children. For more guidance, send your pediatrician a message through MyChart, or consider scheduling a video visit for any medical or mental health concerns.