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Posted by Megan Shitama Weston ● Sat, Mar 21, 2020 @ 14:03 PM

Social Distancing with Kids


We're all doing our part to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 Coronavirus, and for many of us that means being at home with kids all day (often while working from home). Here are some resources to help you keep your kids engaged over the coming days and weeks. 

We know suddenly running your own in-home day camp is a challenge, but you've got this! Here are some great pieces of advice we've seen over the past few days: 

  • Let your kids sleep in a little (if you can get them to) - that will give you a little extra time to sleep, drink your coffee, get work done, or even just have some time to yourself! 
  • Have everyone get dressed at the beginning of the day. Staying in jammies is fun once in awhile, but getting dressed will help keep a sense of normalcy and routine. 
  • Create a schedule, but be flexible - especially if you are working from home while watching the kiddos. Your days don't have to be perfect. (And more screen time than usual is ok - it's all about balance). 
  • Calling this experience "homeschooling" is a lot of pressure. Remember that unstructured play and going outside have educational value! (This is why summer camp is one of the experiences that helps prevent summer learning loss - all of those "non-academic" activities are helping your child's brain and character develop.)

Online Resources:

  • Pecometh Music Time: Watch (or re-watch) the video of summer staffer Olivia leading music time via Facebook Live. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram to see when our next online music time will happen! 
  • Storyline Online: This literacy website features children's books read by well-known actors.
  • Daily Lunch Doodle with Mo Willems: Author and Illustrator Mo Willems of Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus fame is sharing a new video each day. There's even a printable activity to do offline (you can learn to draw the Pigeon!). New videos posted daily at 1pm.
  • Khan Academy: In addition to their great library of teaching videos, they are developing daily schedules and other resources. They are doing daily livestreams for parents and teachers at 12pm EST.
  • Scholastic Learn at Home: Free educational lessons and activities. Each day's plan includes both videos and offline activities. 
  • Audible Stories: Can't read books to your kids all day because you're working remotely? Audible has made a library of kid's audiobooks available for free! 


  • Chromatography Butterfly Craft: All you need are white coffee filters and non-permanent markers! (The butterfly part calls for pipe cleaner, but you could make it work with yarn or string. Or, instead of making a butterfly, fold and cut into paper snowflakes or maybe cut out different shapes... you could try Easter Eggs!)
  • Friendship bracelets: Have your kids make friendship bracelets to give to friends when things get back to the usual schedule. (Let us know if you find creative substitutes for normal friendship bracelet string.)
  • God's Eyes: This is a classic camp activity, that you can adapt to what you have on hand. Search for sticks outside if you don't have popsicle sticks, and use whatever string/yarn you might have on hand. The glue isn't truly necessary, but it does make the craft easier to handle.
    • (For younger kids, you might need to start the craft and then hand it over once the sticks are held steady by the yarn.) 
    • God's Eyes are part of this year's Camp Bible Study Theme

Screen-Free Activities:

  • Pretend Camping Trip: Gather camping supplies (pillows, sleeping bags, flashlights, etc) and build a blanket tent. Sing camp songs, maybe even have a camp picnic dinner.
  • S'mores Inspired Recipes: We haven't heard of any shortages of s'mores supplies in the stores. Next time you restock, grab marshmallows, chocolate, and graham crackers, and try some of these recipes. (Or make classic s'mores in the oven).
  • Check out these 25 Screen-Free Activities from Pobble
  • 30 Days of Lego Play Challenge
    • Instructions for cleaning your LEGO collection (from our Program Assistant Rachel):
      • Wash in a mesh bag in the washing machine (cold, gentle cycle) - don't include tires or electronic components
      • Lay out on a towel to air dry
  • Trash Bag Skits: This is a vintage Camp Pecometh classic! Fill a trash bag or pillowcase with random objects from around the house, and give your kids 10 minutes to create a skit using all of the items. 
  • Nature Scavenger Hunt: Check out these printable nature scavenger hunts that you can give to your kids. Try to get outside each day if you can, but remember to limit contact with other people. Keep your distance, just like you would with wildlife! 
  • Indoor Scavenger Hunt for Toddlers: This idea takes a little prep time, but then your kiddo is free to hunt independently (in theory)
  • Potty Training: If you're like me, you've been wondering when you're going to have time to buckle down and potty train. Well, here's our chance! 

Emotional and Spiritual Wellness

  • Hold your own Vespers service: Vespers is a prayer service to end the day. During Summer Camp, campers gather in the evening and to reflect on what we've learned during the day. Here are some suggestions for holding your own At-Home Vespers:
    • Choose a place that is calm and quiet. Start in a different room (if you can), and move silently and slowly together to your chosen spot.
    • Sing a calm song that your kids know.
    • Say a brief prayer, asking God to bless your time together.
    • Invite everyone to share what has been difficult or confusing during the day. Don't try to answer or explain away any scary and hard things they are experiencing.
    • Invite everyone to share how they have experience God (or experienced love, hope, etc.) during the day.
    • Acknowledge that life looks very different right now. Remind everyone that God is with us through good times and bad, offering us love and comfort.
    • Sing another song
    • Close in prayer: Ask God to continue caring for us, and to help us to care for each other.

What About Summer Camp this Year? 

At this time, Camp Pecometh is committed to preparing for the summer camp season as scheduled. We are closely monitoring the latest news about the outbreak and following the guidance of the CDC, the Maryland State Department of Health, and the American Camp Association (ACA).

  • Until further notice, we are offering the option to register for camp without the usual $50 registration deposit, allowing you to secure your camper's spot without an initial financial commitment.

For more information, read our full update about summer camp and retreats. 

Download the 2020 Summer Camp Brochure:

Get the Brochure

Topics: Parenting