Here are some tips for managing children’s time at home

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Many parents are trying to navigate working from home while their children are also schooling from home amid the coronavirus pandemic

Dr. Kate Eshleman, Psy.D., of Cleveland Clinic Children’s, reminds parents these times, while challenging, can also provide families an opportunity to try to take advantage of the extra time together.

“I think it’s a great idea to try and reframe these experiences and look at what you can do together,” she said. “Maybe playing more family game nights, watching movies together, trying to find a positive, getting out and playing more, or walking the dog together.”

Eshleman admits trying to juggle work responsibilities while helping little ones with schoolwork can feel overwhelming.

Some parents are worried that all of the extra time at home for children will mean they’ll spend the whole day on their electronic devices. Eshleman said we want to try to keep things as normal as possible and keep children from looking at screens all day long when we can. But while we’re dealing with these unprecedented times, she reminds us that it’s OK to give ourselves a break from the regular rules from time to time and be flexible.

“We have our typical limits and we should try and enforce those, but it’s also important to be kind to yourself,” Eshleman said. “We need to be creative about what are we going to do instead -- listening to audiobooks, cleaning out a closet, putting together old puzzles, looking through photo albums, just being creative and engage in activities that are not based on screens.”

Eshleman said it’s also important to recognize that it’s going to take some time for everyone -- parents and children -- to adjust to more time at home, so patience is key.