Are you finding yourself becoming bored at home lately? Many of us have been placed on a “Safer At Home” order for over a month now, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This may be causing increased boredom in you, or the loved senior in your life. Keeping engaged during this time of isolation is critical for older adults that are considered high-risk if they were to contract the coronavirus. It is important for us to participate in life-enhancing activities from home currently, and to support the older adults in your life to do the same. Here are 15 activity ideas you may not have thought about partaking in yet:
- Send a letter, poem, or crossword puzzle to a loved one – Everybody enjoys receiving some good ole’ fashioned mail! Take the time to write a letter or send an uplifting message via the mail.
- Covia Well Connected – Covia Well Connected was created to enhance emotional connection and engagement for seniors. You can sign up to attend these activities for FREE via phone or computer including meditation, art, writing, reading, conversation, and much more. Click here to take you directly to their website.
- Card games and puzzles – Pull out some of those dusty playing cards and puzzles that have been sitting in your closet for years! 3D puzzles have been popular among the senior community lately. You’ve probably forgotten how much fun you had partaking in these activities, plus many card games and puzzles can be completed with just one player.
- Google Arts and Culture - This is a great place to view virtual images of art, museum collections, famous places, historical events, and more from the comfort of your own couch! Click here to take you directly to their website.
- The kitchen is calling your name – Look through your cabinets or pantry, pick out some basic foods, and see what new recipes you can come up with. Another idea is to try an old recipe (maybe one that has been handed down in your family), or one that has been forgotten about, and revamp it!
- FactSlides - FactSlides.com is a FREE trivia website that has intellectual facts about anything you could dream of! It is a fun and interactive resource that helps in staying mentally engaged. Click here to take you directly to their website.
- Participate in simple art activities – Turn off that TV! Take some time to relax and sketch, draw, paint, or color something. Coloring has aided in anxiety relief for many, especially during this time of uncertainty. FREE adult coloring material is available throughout the internet. Click here to download and print free Mandalas by Just Color.
- Learn a new language – Planning on taking a trip abroad in the future? Duolingo is an online way to learn a second language, and is completely FREE! Click here to take you directly to their website.
- Whip up some homemade lemonade – Now that we are seeing warmer weather, have you tried homemade lemonade? All it takes are lemons, water and sugar! Take 2 lemons, slice both of the lemons into quarters, and then squeeze the lemons into a pitcher. Next, add 1 cup of sugar to the lemons and let it sit for a few hours. Finally, add water and stir. It’s so refreshing!
- NASA Live – Take a trip to space! This official NASA live stream features an ongoing stream of events, showcasing things happening in space, live. Click here for the live stream.
- Get a head start on your Spring/Summer garden – Going outside and getting some fresh air is also a critical factor in staying engaged while we isolate ourselves at home. You now have more time than ever to get your garden looking like you’ve always wanted it! Spending time working on small projects outdoors can aid in a feeling of accomplishment for the day and lift your spirits. You can also grow your vegetables and herbs inside! Click here to view different versions of indoor gardening kits you can purchase from Amazon.com.
- Pier 39 Sea Lion webcam – Ready to take that vacation you had to cancel due to COVID-19? The Pier 39 Sea Lion Webcam will make you feel like you’re on vacation, watching adorable sea lions interact along the pier of San Francisco, live. Click here for the live stream.
- Take a trip down memory lane – Look through photo albums, old notes, and videos to remind you of past events that you’ve enjoyed. Remember how much fun it was to take pictures with your old camera, instead of your phone? Pick up that old 35mm camera and start taking photos again! This will help jog your memory and keep it fresh. Staying positive and reminiscing on better times is key to getting through this tough time!
- Get crafty – Now is the time to learn a new crafting skill! Is there a cross stitch piece you’ve been wanting to start? What about wood working or quilting? Youtube has tons of online videos that can teach you anything you need to know!
- Virtual "Happy Hour" with friends – We still have a need to be social with others, you might just have to do it virtually. Start a group chat via text message and catch up with old friends. Better yet, have a virtual happy hour with friends! Pour yourself a glass of your favorite beverage (maybe the delicious homemade lemonade you just made) and hop on a Zoom call with your besties.
What are some unique things you or the loved senior in your life is doing to stay engaged during this time of social distancing? Share with us below!😀
Collectively written by: Dixie Qualls, RN and Elise Brantley, Marketing Coordinator
*Many of the resources from this article are provided by the Aging Life Care Association, as well as The Hummingbird Project. For more resources and content on engagement for seniors during the COVID-19 crisis, click on the links above.
Share these ideas with your loved ones, and click below to share via social media!