Our homes have become – now more than ever – centralized to all aspects of our lives! Under the state’s Stay Home Order, I leave my small apartment only to go for a walk in my neighborhood every morning. These quiet moments have become sacred to me as I and the natural world awaken together – I see or hear an additional bird species each day and the ground has slowly transformed from brown to protrusions of green. Once I return home, it’s time for coffee and breakfast, to bid a distant goodbye to my husband who’s an Essential Worker, and to settle in to work in my Home Office / former Guest Bedroom.
Throughout the day, as my legs become stir crazy my work drifts into the kitchen and living room. By bedtime, I crave to return to the one space that remains untouched by the demands of Work from Home and Life under Isolation: the bedroom. Bedrooms can be a sanctuary for rest and self-care. Keeping children’s bedrooms free of clutter and designated for the purposes of self-care will optimize their daily periods of quiet rest and nightly sleep.
Books placed near the child’s bed or within reach of a comfortable chair or reading nook will foster a child’s association of reading and comfort – a building block to independent literacy!
Is the overall environment prepared to support restful routines and activity? Are the toys accessible in the bedroom soft, and in a variety of colors and textures for sensory exploration? Does the artwork on the wall beautifully encourage restful contemplation, and is it placed at the child’s eye-level?
Consider adding a music source to your child’s room to encourage self-soothing.
Place a limited selection of season-appropriate clothes hung at child-height in a closet or in low drawers your child can easily open and close. Designate an accessible space for your child to place their dirty laundry. As your child explores the freedom of choosing their own clothing, you may need to adjust how many options are available to them daily and which clothes are seasonally appropriate.
Does your child have access to their own tools for self-care? Hang a vertical mirror on the wall or make a hand-held mirror accessible for your child. A small table in your child’s room may hold the tools they need for self-care (hairbrush, etc.) and provide a surface for independent activities.
Dolls and stuffed animals provide opportunities for your child to practice the processes of self-care.