Supporting Children At Home – Part 1

Back • March 24, 2020 • Emerging Issues

The 21st century is an era of increased economic interdependence, unpredictability, variability, and dynamic change.  Advancing technology plays a critical role in globalization and the shifting educational paradigms in which online learning has become necessary to career and post-secondary success. During this worldwide pandemic, it is even more critical that caretakers and teachers utilize technology to effectively support remote learning.

With schools closed, parents, grandparents and other caregivers are looking for ways to keep children occupied and learning for the many hours at home.  In this occasional blog, Connecticut Voices for Children will offer suggestions that we hope will help to use the time in ways that are fun and beneficial for children and caregivers alike.


Establish a Daily Routine

Many child experts are suggesting establishing a daily routine.  Here are 2 samples from our families.  They are similar but reflect the number of children and their ages, the skills and interests of the parents, the weather at the time and the availability of outdoor recreation areas.

Option 1 

  • 8:00       Breakfast
  • 9:00       Nature Walk
  • 10:00     Art
  • 11:00      Play
  • 12:00     Lunch
  • 1:00       Reading
  • 2:00       Art or TV
  • 3:00       Bike Ride
  • 4:00       Mystery Time
  • 5:00       Dinner
  • 6:00       Bath

Option 2

  • 8:30       Morning Meeting
  • 8:45       Reader’s Workshop
  • 9:30       Writer’s Workshop
  • 10:15      Snack and Recess
  • 10:30     Choice Time
  • 11:15      Recess & Lunch
  • 12:15      Science
  • 1:00       Games
  • 2:00       Art

Even with planning like this, it’s likely that children will be allowed far more “screen time” than usual; this provides an opportunity for caretakers to employ technology to supplement learning.  Below are some sites to explore.  Due to rising inequality, we know that not all families have access to digital technology.  As we work with partners to close the digital divide, we hope those with access to technology will share what you’ve learned with your neighbors that don’t have the opportunity to try these resources directly.


Instructional Resources

Although Edutopia was created as an instructional tool for educators, caretakers can benefit from this resource while they are tasked with some homeschooling during the pandemic.  Edutopia provides face to face instruction with technology mediated activities.  Users can search resources by grade level to have appropriate pedagogical strategies.  Additionally, this site provides pages on blended learning, social and emotional learning, and game-based learning.

Edutopia also has specific resources for parents that can be used at home, which include but are not limited to the following:

Recommended Apps for Students with Special Needs

Teaching Young Learners How to Code

Below is a recommended list of other popular learning programs that can be used from home:


Reading Eggs

Khan Academy 

The Activity Mom

Discovery Education


Computer Based Activities

These computer based activities look like they will be both entertaining and educational:

Art classes with author and artist Jarrett J. Krosoczka

LUNCH DOODLES with Mo Willems

Cosmic Kids Yoga


Educational TV Shows

And here are some educational TV shows that we have seen recommended:

For age 2+

  • “Mickey Mouse Clubhouse” — Disney Channel
  • “Sesame Street” — PBS and HBO

For age 3+

  • “The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That” — PBS Kids
  • “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” — PBS

For age 4+

  • “Tumble Leaf” — Amazon Prime
  • “Doc McStuffins” — Disney Junior
  • “Sid the Science Kid” — PBS Kids
  • “Wallykazam!” — Nickelodeon

For age 5+

  • “The Electric Company” — PBS
  • “Word Girl” — PBS Kids

For age 6+

  • “Design Squad Nation” — PBS Kids
  • “Planet Earth” — Discovery Channel


Look out for our next Support Children at Home blog post with more suggestions for children, and some for adults too!


Authors: Ellen Scalettar, J.D., Senior Fellow for Fiscal Policy and Sana Shah, M.S., Chief of Staff