With social distancing in place and travel restricted, video chat is a great way to share the Christmas spirit with family , especially kids and grandkids. As a result of the COVID 19 virus many grandparents haven’t seen their grandchildren this year and won’t see them this holiday season. You can assure that you won’t be one of those grandparents if you use video chat. Here are some ideas for holiday fun.
Help decorate the holiday tree with a grandchild by sending ornaments and watching as kids place them on the tree. You can also watch as stockings are hung. Using a mobile device, tablet or phone, tour your home and show others your tree and decorations. Are there outdoor decorations that would be fun for you to share? Children quickly learn how to use a mobile device and are excited to show you their decorations and holiday art.
Visit with Santa
Kids are discovering how much fun a visit with Santa can be using video. In fact, parents are learning that some younger children are less apprehensive about talking to Santa when they are in their own home and on their parent’s lap. You can schedule a live, personal visit with Santa visit by using one of the apps in the Google play store or Apple store. Online check out hiresanta.com to learn more about virtual visits.
Holiday Gift Exchange
Have you ever sent a gift to a child and then wondered what they really thought about it? When we send gifts to our grandchildren for birthdays and holidays we always request that they be opened during a video call. It is especially helpful for young children to see who sent the gift. For grandparents it’s priceless to see the child’s response and share their excitement.
Be prepared, as the reaction to your gift may not always be what you expect or hoped for. I once set pajamas that I thought my two-year-old grandson would love. What I learned was that the stickers on the package were much more interesting to him than the gift. As a result of seeing his reaction, I added stickers to other packages that I mailed and, I didn’t send clothes to my other grandchildren until they were older and could enjoy the gift. It wasn’t long before dinosaur pajamas were a big hit.
As children get older they often like to pick out their own clothes. You might consider having a catalogue sent to children so they can select items that they like. I often do this with the Lands End Children’s catalogue and my school age grandchildren. The package is placed under the tree until the next video chat when we can be with them virtually to open the gift.
Fun Holiday Activities
Sing holiday songs together. Email the words to your favorite songs and enjoy singing with others. If you play an instrument join in. A family holiday concert is a fun way to celebrate. Read holiday stories such as The Night Before Christmas, Bear Stays Up for Christmas or The Christmas Star to grandchildren. We often purchase holiday poppers and open those at the end of a meal. Kids enjoy the activity and the small toys inside the popper.
Share a Holiday Meal
Add a tablet or other mobile device to your holiday table and share a meal together. Plan the time when you can join your family virtually and share favorite holiday stories. Plan the menu so you are sharing some of the same traditional foods. Demonstrate how to prepare a favorite traditional recipe or bake holiday cookies during a chat.
Lillian Tibbles PhD is the 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.