Lockdown is particularly tough if you have kids. Not only do you need to keep them entertained, you also need to make sure they’re still learning.
Exhausting if you’re also running a household and working at the same time.
But one mum has come up with a genius way to keep her kids entertained while also teaching them the value of money while they’re under lockdown.
Paula Clark, from Aberdeenshire, Scotland, set up her own adorable mini-shop at home to teach her sons, Kai, seven, and Kadyn, 10, how to budget as well as, crucially, making sure they’re not eating everything in the house.
In the shop, fruit is free, raisins are 5p, and if the boys want a sweet treat like an ice lolly, they have to budget for it using the pound they are each given each day.
‘My boys and me set up the shop on the first day the boys were home after school closing due to the Covid-19 pandemic,’ Paula, 43, told money-saving community LatestDeals.co.uk
‘I first thought it up as my little boy is a constant snacker and always sneaking snacks so it helps him by sticking to his daily budget.
‘We started by printing off shop signs and deciding where they would set up the shop, then started to build it.
‘They had great fun setting up and we decided on times and the budget together.’
Paula’s boys get a pound a day to spend at the shop and they have laminated wipe-able lists to keep track of what they have bought and spent.
‘They are learning about different coins, counting change and budgeting, and we will change the prices of what’s in the shop as time goes on,’ says Paula.
‘We try to bake every other day or so for the shop, and the fruit is free. They really enjoy this and it makes being at home all the time a little more exciting since there are no visits to shops at all just now.’
When it’s time to restock, the boys write down what they would like, and Paula tries her best to get what they’ve asked for when she does her family food shop.
Paula has been using lots of free resources and creative pursuits to keep the family busy during the coronavirus.
‘The boys are missing going out to see friends and outings with us and we aren’t getting our holiday abroad in the Easter break but they have seemed to accept and understand why,’ says Paula.
‘We have a clock in our shop too to help with learning the time and will read lots, learn times tables and do the schoolwork given by their teachers too.
‘We do Joe Wicks PE every day or kids’ yoga on YouTube and go for walks – we don’t have a strict routine as such but getting dressed before breakfast and not getting into a habit of PJ days through the week seems to set us up right for the day.’
Paula says she also uses Oxford Learning Tree and Twinkle for free resources online to help with keeping the kids engaged.
‘Before we had to stay at home I had just registered as a childminder, which has been put on hold for now till things go back to normality, but in the meantime I’m making the most of online resources and have lots more projects in mind to keep the boys occupied while learning at the same time.’
If you have any clever hacks for keeping little ones entertained during lockdown then we want to hear from you.
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