Children may be out of school but learning compassion for animals never has to stop. Now that many parents are working from home due to the Coronavirus pandemic, we know how hard it is to keep your young ones busy in an educational, yet fun, way.
1. Stream Educational Content
There are dozens of streaming platforms that have educational documentaries such as Planet Earth, Blue Planet, and even shows from NatGeo (on Disney+ no less!). Not only are these shows educating people on animals, but they’re also captivating. Planet Earth II (currently streaming worldwide) is the most-watched TV show in the UK for the past 15 years.
Because some content is more graphic than others, use your discretion on which shows are right for your child.
2. Activity Book for Kids
Is your kid into coloring and mazes? Well, you’re in luck! World Animal Protection produced an activity book for kids that includes mazes, word searches, coloring pages, and more. It highlights our Wildlife. Not Entertainers campaigns such as wildlife selfies, swimming with dolphins, and elephant entertainment.
3. Watch Local Wildlife
We’re all supposed to be social distancing right now, but that doesn’t mean you can’t go outside! Local parks and preserves serve as great places to educate your children on local wildlife. In New York, for instance, wild animals include foxes, deer, and coyotes!
So even though you have work to do, take that mental health break, walk in nature, enjoy the wildlife, and tucker out your little munchkins!
4. Live Stream National Parks and Sanctuaries
Kids love watching things in real-time and animals are not any different. Right now, many sanctuaries, national parks, and preserves are live-streaming calming nature areas or animals. This can captivate your child into watching animals act naturally in their wild habitats or connect to animals rescued in legitimate sanctuaries.
Our sanctuary partner, Libearty Bear Sanctuary, live streams a frequent favorite place for their rescued bears. This helps our supporters connect to the animals they helped rescue and we know it gives us joy watching these bears live their lives in peace.
5. Make Toys for Animals
If you have dogs and cats at home, it’s important to teach your child to love and respect them. This includes playtime! What better way to keep kids occupied than making toys for your pets and then playing with them?
DIY cat toys and DIY dog toys can be easy to make or more time-consuming for older kids. These toys not only help children feel accomplished when they’re completed, but the joy they spark when your pets love them will make them beam from ear to ear.
Don’t have pets at home? Don’t fret! Dog and cat toys can be made and sent to your local animal shelters to help keep animals waiting for their forever homes occupied. Even toys made for farmed animals like chickens can be sent to sanctuaries for enrichment!
6. Make Paper Animals
Most of us already have toilet paper rolls and construction paper in our homes, so this may be an easy and fun project for your kids to do.
Have your kids make their favorite animal and learn a couple of new facts about them. Not only does this keep your kid occupied but can educate them on how these animals live!
7. Foster a Dog or Cat From Your Local Shelter
Having time at home with the kids makes it a perfect time to teach them the responsibility of caring for an animal while helping your local animal shelter. While animals are waiting for adoption, it is better for them to be in a home situation with people to care for them than in a shelter that might have problems keeping up during these times.
Showing compassion to our furry friends is a great family activity and helps you to give back to the shelters that work hard to care for these animals.
I hope this helps keep your kids occupied while you get some work done! To keep updated with World Animal Protection's work and ways your children can learn more, sign up for our newsletter today.