Tag Archives: video call

BUILDING STRONG BONDS WITH KIDS DURING THE CORONA VIRUS AND SOCIAL DISTANCING

BUILDING STRONG BONDS WITH KIDS DURING THE CORONAVIRUS AND SOCIAL DISTANCING

My grandchildren and I have been socially distancing for the past 10 years. It wasn’t because of a virus. Two of my grandchildren live 3000 miles away from me and always have. A third grandchild also lives in a different state. Today the Coronavirus has separated many families and I want to let you know that developing strong bonds with children is possible with video chat.

There are many video chat apps that will connect you to the children you love. Whether you use Skype, FaceTime, Google Duo, Facebook, or Zoom you are only seconds away from developing strong bonds. It’s easy, it’s fun, and if you are not chatting with kids get started today. Children love to see a face as well as hear your voice.

Interactive chats build relationships. An interactive chat is one where there is action and communication between two people. Children become motivated to pay attention, to participate, and to learn when you interact with them. If you play an echo game and repeat a baby’s sounds, he will be draw to your voice. Toddlers love to play peek-a-boo. Using a scarf to hide behind or moving away from the camera and then popping back delights young children during a call.

Reading to a child and discussing the book, or having the child make the sounds of animals or vehicles in a story is fun and interactive. Show and tell is one of my grandchildren’s favorite interactive activities. Sometimes I do the showing, presenting an object like a shell that I’ve found on a walk. The children love to show me books, toys, clothes and sports equipment. One of my grandson’s wanted to show me how well he has learned to throw a football and we were both excited as it flew across my computer screen.

Start today, get the app have fun and start building strong bond!

Lillian Tibbles is a grandmother and author of 3 books about Video Chat with Kids.
Her latest book How to Have Fun with Kids & Grandkids Using Video Chat is available
in both digital and print format.

100+ Fun Activities For Skype With Children

100+ Fun Activities For Skype With Children  is now available as both an eBook and paperback book on Amazon. Since 2010 when I first interacted with my grandson on Skype I have been on a mission to help families connect with video call.

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Discover easy, age appropriate & educational activities for Skype, FaceTime, and video call with children. With video call you can see and interact with the person that you are calling – it’s much more fun than a telephone call. Learn how Skype & FaceTime can connect you with family when you travel for work, if you are in the military, are divorced, or miles away from grandchildren. Readers will also find useful advice for communicating with children and young adults from infancy through the college years. Also included are important internet safety tips for children and adults. Get ready to enjoy Skype and FaceTime with the children you love.

 

The eBook can be easily downloaded and taken along with you when you travel. It is short and inexpensive but chock full of ideas that you can quickly access.

Readers will find age appropriate activities and advice for communicating with children and young adults from infancy through the college years.

•  Explore more than one hundred ideas for fun activities to enjoy with video call apps like Skype and FaceTime  

•  Learn how to begin connecting with infants and babies during a video chat 

•  Explore ideas for video calls with school age children, teens and college age student

•  Find useful tips for improving communication with children

•  Discover the value of video chat for grandparents  

•  Learn how to stay connected to your child or grandchild after divorce

•  Learn about internet safety for both children and adults

 Get ready to enjoy Skype and FaceTime with the children you love.

 

 

 

KEEP CHILDREN SAFE WITH VIDEO CHAT APPS

Skype, FaceTime, Google + and Facebook all have video chat options.  It’s important to know that these are designed for adult use. Children need to be protected from internet fraud when using these apps. Danger is lurking as we see children under  the age of twoshutterstock_98683820 who have quickly learned to swipe the face of tablets and phones  to gain access.

Vigilance in using and checking the privacy settings on all devices that a child will have access to is the first step. Young children should never use a video chat app without supervision. Discussion with the child about internet safety is also crucial.  Accepting a calls from someone not in the child’s contact list can be dangerous – predators often mask as friends. Parents must discuss the importance of never accepting calls from anyone the child does not know.  Consider visiting the FBI Online Safety site with your child  – click here: https://www.fbi.gov/fun-games/kids/kids-safety.

Skype’s provides this warning and good advice on their website:

Skype’s websites and software are not intended for or designed to attract users under the age of 13. We encourage parents to be involved in the online activities of their children to make sure that no information is collected from a child without parental permission.
We take the safety of Skype end users very seriously and have security measures in place to help protect children, who have appropriate parental permissions to use Skype, from being contacted by strangers. These include:

  • Only allowing people in the child’s contact list to contact the child using Skype, including voice and video calls, chat messages and sharing screens.
  • Hiding the age, date of birth and gender of children on profile pages, so others cannot see this information.
  • Hiding children from search results unless they are returned as an exact match by Skype Name or email.

Important: Our security measures are based on the date of birth provided by the end user when creating a profile, so it is very important to enter the correct information.
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FaceTime recommends parents use Settings to turn off the option to use FaceTime and turn it on when a parent is present. For older children who know how to get to the settings you may want to consider a password to protect the device.

Consider a program like Skypito for younger children – click here for more information:

The Intel Security Company also has a guide for keeping video chats safe – click here:  https://blogs.mcafee.com/consumer/parents-to-know-video-chat

If safely used video chatting is great for kids. They can stay in contact with a parent who is not home, call grandparents, do homework, and be with friends. Share some of the ways that you keep your children safe online – ltibbles@videocallwithkids.com
www.videocallwithkids.com – Like us on Facebook.

Share Books With Sound With Skype and FaceTime

One of the activities all my grandchildren love to share on Skype is reading books with Dinosaur350sound. It all began when I purchased Dinosaur written by Mark Radar and illustrated by Casey Sanborn. Dinosaur, whose name is Stegosaurus, is searching for his friend Frog. There is a button to make the sound of Stegosaurus, a second button to hear Stegosaurus stomp as he searches and a third button to hear Frog. What child doesn’t enjoy a game of hid and seek!

“Grammy, read Dinosaur.” All my grandchildren began to request that I read this book. When they came to visit the book was there for us to read together and it was enjoyed as an old familiar friend. Since that time I have added other books with sound. Roger Priddy has written many including Noisy Trucks. Others include Polar Bear, Polar Bear by Bill Martin and Around The Farm by Eric Carle. Consider reading books with sound as they have great appeal to children 16 months to school age.

How To Get Help With Skype Video Calls

Skype has great support for users and it’s easy to find answers to your questions on their site. When you sign in look at the left sidebar for your name. To the right of your name select the three small dots. then select Help and feedback. A pop up box will appear where you will select Get help in the left column.  That takes you to the help page. shutterstock_90272782-650Right at the top of the page is a large search window. Just type in your question and click on the magnifying glass, or hit enter, to search for an answer. You can also look for answers below the search box. If you are new to Skype select the smiley face icon to Get Started. Find the list for answers about the latest version of Skype, and below that a list for frequently asked questions – FAQ

As I teach others to use Skype I often come across questions about features that I may not have used. I can find the answers here about using Skype for messaging, connecting to Facebook, using different devices and much more………..

If you are a visual learner there are short videos available on YouTube that will help you to enjoy using Skype. 

 Contact me and share your video call ideas

Reading and Skype

Share stories with children or grandchildren on Skype no matter how far away you are. Reading to children on Skype or Face Time demonstrates your enthusiasm for reading and can encourage a child to read and love books. When reading to children during a video call shutterstock_57014594smtry using different voices for different characters or props to attract interest. Hold the book page close to the webcam after reading each page so the child can clearly see the pictures. Read poems and stories, and for older children, try newspaper or magazine articles.

Take a look at Pam Allyn’s book What to Read When for an extensive annotated list of more than three hundred book titles for children from birth to ten years. One of my grandson’s favorite books to read with me is Dinosaur. It has three sound buttons, stegosaurus’s sound, the sound of his stomping as he tries to find his friend Frog and the sound that Frog makes.

Sending a book that you have on Skype or Face Time to the child is a special gift.

If you have a favorite book to read on Skype contact me and let us know. 

Why Using Video Call Is Important for Families That Are Separated

What is the most important reason to learn to use video call apps like Skype and FaceTime? Video call can keep you connected to your family. I just returned
from Wyoming and a visit with two of my grandchildren. I am separated from my daughter and her children by 3,000 miles. My son and his family are 700+ miles from where I live in Florida. Despite the separation of those many miles, my grandchildren know me well and are comfortable being with me when we visit in person.

Upon my arrival in Wyoming my 3 year old grandson ran into my arms. I picked him up and we hugged and felt the love that we share for each other. His mom had told him that I would be arriving and he waited expectantly for the visit. Later he said “Grammy I have lots of people that love me,” it warmed my heart.

Our 6 month old greeted me with a big smile. Because our Skype visits are frequent, both children have no difficulty being with me, even when months pass between actual visits.

Another important reason to use video call is that young children are much more comfortable sharing their thoughts when they can see you face to face, rather than on a telephone call.  I know what my grandchildren like. Chatting online I learned that our 3 year old loves superheroes and he was very excited to receive some hero stickers from me.  He also loves to help bake and cook simple foods. So I made opportunities for us to prepare muffins and simple breakfast dishes together.  Video call has kept us close. If you haven’t tried it, do it today. Don’t miss out on this wonderful way to stay connected.

Contact me and share your video call ideas

Gardening with Children on Skype and Facetime

Looking for ways to engage children in a video call with Skype or FaceTime? Think about the many options available for gardening. We just celebrated Earth Day with our 3 year old by taking care of plants outdoors. One year ago in April I planted the top of pineapple Butterfly3in a small pot. Over the year my grandson watched it grow on Skype. As it outgrew the small pot we shared the fun of putting it in a larger pot and watching it grow even more. Last week when he visited us in Florida he got to water the pineapple plant along with herbs and other plants outdoors. By next April we hope to have our first pineapple to enjoy.

Children love to watch plants grow and through video call you can encourage and share the fun. For younger children you can start with a simple carrot, pineapple top or herbs. Edible gardens are fun to share during video calls and on special visits to your home. Plants that attract butterflies also attract children as they watch in awe as the butterflies appear. With older children gardening provides an opportunity to discuss weather and the environment, use of herbs, insects, water conservation and many other science topic. Here are some great resources to learn more about Gardening with kids:

 www.kidsgardening.org

www.pinterest.com/educatorsspinon/gardening-with-kids

urbanext.illinois.edu/firstgarden

http://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/bhcv2/bhcarticles.nsf/pages/Gardening_for_children

http://www.almanac.com/content/plants-attract-butterflies

ltibbles@videocallwithkids.com

 Contact me and share your video call ideas

 

 

Video Call, Children and Music

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Using music during a video call is a wonderful way to interact with children. Singing Pat a Cake, Pat a Cake got the attention of my grandson at five months of age. As I began singing he looked directly at me on the computer screen and smiled while his mother put his hands together and clapped. Repetition of favorite songs is so much fun for children.

Itsy Bitsy Spider is another favorite.  Playing games with songs and gentle touch will pull the child’s attention to the computer screen. Children as young as five or six months can play with a little assistance. A parent holding the child can gently move her fingers up the baby’s arms to stimulate the itsy bitsy spider climbing the water spout. Clapping baby’s hands together while singing Pat a Cake helps the child participate with you in a musical game they delight in. There is no shortage of great children’s songs. If need to refresh your memory look in my book Learn to Video Call With Kids where I list over fifty favorite children’s songs. Children’s songs can also be found on the Internet.

Two and three year olds can play simple instruments and a good quality child’s xylophone is great fun for the child to play for you during a video call. Older children who are taking music lessons can share a new song they have learned during your call. If both you and the child play an instrument, play a song together during your video call. You may be miles apart but you will enjoy the activity as if you were in the same room.

 

 Contact me and share your video call ideas

 

Play Hide and Seek on Skype or FaceTime

I just love all the great video call ideas that I get from friends and family. My friend Carol recently shared her experience playing Hide and Seek with her 3 year old granddaughter Meghan. Hide and Seek is a game where one player attempts to conceal their location while other players attempt to find them.

This is a favorite game for children of all ages. Hide and seek can be played indoors or shutterstock_143948665weboutdoors, with several children or just one. With older children and multiple players outdoors would be more practical. A tree or other landmark is designated as Home Base. As the person who is It searches, all players attempt to reach the safety of Home Base.

With a young child remaining in one room that has some favorite hiding places is just fine. Setting down some rules is a good idea. For example Megan knew in advance that she would be hiding in the family room only. Grandma would be It – the person who attempts to find the child.

Meghan’s mom signed onto Skype on her mobile phone in Pennsylvania. Carol was sitting at home in Florida. Meghan was excitedly waiting to play one of her favorite games with her grandmother.

To begin the game the person who is It covers their eyes with their hands and slowly counts to ten – grandma began to count while Meghan scampered to one of her favorite hiding places. The person who is It is not allowed to peek until the count is done. Once the person who is It is finished counting they shout Ready or not here I come!  

With a little help from mom – moving the mobile phone to look behind the sofa and under a table, grandma was able to search for Meghan. Finally two little feet where spotted behind a curtain and Meghan squealed with delight. Of course, she wanted to play again and again.

Don’t let the distance stop you from enjoying playing games with the children you are far away from. Be creative – have fun with video call!

 Contact me and share your video call ideas
LTibbles@videocallwithkids.com