Current as of May 19, 2020 Coronavirus disease 2019 restrictions are beginning to relax. However, many parents are still working and teaching their children at home. And that can be exhausting. The Department of Defense is committed to helping you manage. Add some new activities to your toolkit. Try some apps for self-care. And reach out for support if you need it. Here are resources to help you stay the course.
For preschool age children: • The National Head Start Association has ideas for learning at home. • Sesame Street for Military Families has many resources. Find videos, items to print, mobile apps, games and activities. There is even a section on health emergencies. • ZERO TO THREE is about babies and toddlers. Try the At-Home Activity Guide. See “Explore Our Topics” on the homepage. Check out videos and articles. Learn about early learning, play, sleep, discipline and more. • THRIVE provides free online parenting support. It comes from the Department of Defense and the Clearinghouse for Military Family Readiness at Penn State. The new program helps with raising children 0-18. It features healthy recipes, online family support and much more.
For youth and teens: You may be schooling at home. Your children may be finishing the year online. But free online learning resources can help. The Morale, Welfare and Recreation Digital Library, for example, has resources for all ages. Another resource for military youth and teens is Military Kids Connect. It lets children connect to an online community of other military kids. It has teen-led tours, a message board and more. Try this link they suggest for some fun NASA activities to do at home.
Military families know that life challenges can inspire us to be our best selves. This time at home lets us practice stress-management skills and try new tools. These resources can build resilience: • These recommended wellness apps are free. You can use them on your mobile device. So they can go with you anywhere. Some are designed for service members and parents. Others are designed for children, like Parenting2Go, and Sesame Street’s Breathe, Think, Do. • The Department of Defense provides free, confidential, non-medical counseling to service members and their families. Licensed counselors are available 24/7. Learn more or call 800-342-9647. Online chat and OCONUS call options are also available.
Stay up to date on all the latest information on COVID-19. For updates and information specific to your location, visit your installation’s official website. You can also follow your installation’s Facebook, Twitter or Instagram platforms. For Department of Defense updates for the military community, visit Defense.gov, follow Military OneSource’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram platforms, and continue to check the Coronavirus Updates for Our Military Community page for updates.