How to keep your kids busy while you work from home

Working from home can be an exercise in balancing your professional and personal life, especially if you have children. If your kids are toddlers, you have to depend on your partners, family, or childcare providers to keep them away from your Zoom sessions. If they are of school age, you may have time for yourself and your work during school hours, until the end of the school day.

Below are some toys, videos and ideas that some of our employees with children have come up with to help you keep things a little healthier while you finish your work day.

Keep the kids busy

Marbrasse acrylic pen holder.
Image: Marbrasse

Esther Cohen, Associate Director of Audience Development for The edge, says, “I took one of those rotating desk organizers and filled it with crayons, markers, crayons, scissors, glue, etc. I also have two trays, one for white paper/construction paper and one for storing things when completed. I stuck it all on the empty dining room table. The kids would come home, shower and – without me nudging them – gravitate towards it because it’s set up for them and so easy. This usually keeps them busy for an hour.

This clear plastic organizer rotates 360 degrees and can hold pens, pencils, crayons and all sorts of other things.


From three years old

Toniebox

Toniebox.
Image: Tonies

Emma Merlis, senior director of newsroom analytics for Vox Media, thought about investing in a Toniebox. This screenless audio player will tell stories and sing songs to your children when they place one of dozens of different characters (cartoon characters, fairy tale princesses, favorite protagonists from books) on the speaker to child. It’s a great idea to keep your child occupied without keeping them glued to a screen.

A screenless box that, with the help of figures, tells stories, sings songs and entertains the preschool set.


For ages 4 to 10

Osmo

Osmo.
Image: Tangible Game

Jory Ruscio, who was Head of Engineering at Vox and is now Senior Data Platform Engineer at Better, said, “We’re a big fan of Osmo games for preschoolers. Playing Osmo is a very popular activity for my three children. Physical coins allow for a much more interactive and tactile experience. The games are entertaining and educational. From exploring physics and coding to making pizza and calculating change, kids are kept busy for hours.

This innovative device lets you put your tablet in the base so your kids can combine innovative learning games with physical play pieces.


Screen Education and Entertainment

For children from two to eight years old

ABCmouse.com Early Learning Academy

ABCmouse.com Early Learning Academy.
Image: Age of Learning

Abigail Aronofsky, who is the executive director of corporate marketing at Vox Media, reported two years ago that they “hopped on the ABCmouse train” for their five-year-old, and it was surprisingly great. “The graphics are very 2002, but it kept her entertained for about an hour a day.”

A library of activities for children aged two to eight that operates through an annual subscription.


For preschoolers and up

Bluey

Bluey.
Picture: BBC and ABC Studios

When a Vox Media parent praised the Disney Plus show Bluey, several others stepped in to offer their applause. This show is about a family of dogs that lives in Australia: a mother, a father, a four-year-old child and a six-year-old child. According to Nathan Edwards, reviews editor at The edge, one of the reasons the series is so popular is that kids love it and it’s fun for parents too. “Bluey is currently our #1 solution,” adds Christopher Grant, Group Publisher The edge and Polygon. “Bless you, Bluey.


For preschoolers

Daniel Tiger's neighborhood

Neighborhood of Daniel Tiger.
Picture: PBS

Another parent favorite (suggested by Nikolas Wise, Head of Engineering at Vox Media) is Daniel Tiger’s neighborhooda modern offshoot of the venerable Mr. Rogers’ neighborhood. The animated series centers on Daniel Tiger, who lives in the Make Believe neighborhood with his parents, friends and their parents and uses Strategy Songs – short ditties that explore various feelings and experiences – to help children learn and develop. develop.


For ages 6 to 12

Amazon Fire HD 8 Kids Pro

Amazon Fire HD 8 Kids Pro.
Image: Amazon

Dan Seifert, Associate Reviews Editor for The edge, reports, “On paper, there are a lot of things that make the Kids Edition Fire tablets appealing to parents. They all come with a bulky rubber case that makes it easy to hold and hard to break. If your child breaks it, Amazon offers two years of worry-free protection. And every Kids Edition tablet comes with a subscription to Amazon’s Kids Plus service, which lets parents control what content is available and set limits on how long kids can use the tablet each day.

“In practice, the tablets are objectively terrible. The interface is confusing, performance is sluggish and sluggish, and battery life leaves a lot to be desired. These things all matter to me, a professional product reviewer, but for my kids, the Fire tablets we gave them on a vacation are their favorite toys. They use them to play games, watch Sponge Bob SquarePantsand maybe read a book once in a while.

Amazon’s Fire tablet has been specially designed for children aged 6 to 12.


For adults

Underpads to please the neighbors

RugpadUSA Padded Floor Mat

RugpadUSA padded floor mat.
Image: Rugpad USA

Amelia Holowaty Krales, senior photo editor at The edge, suggested that (at least for her) it might be a good idea to order “the thickest padding available so my downstairs neighbors don’t kill me for the kids doing tricks.” I have a good friend who is in this position, and although he likes the kids upstairs, sometimes he wants them to do their rounds a bit later in the morning.

Thick underpads that protect floors from damage and muffle the sound of little feet. (Price listed is for an 8 x 10 foot, half inch thick pad; other sizes are available.)


time management tools

The overflow stack includes review devices, sensors, and an Echo Show 8.

Time management tools – software or laptops – can help control chaos at work and at home.
Photo by Dan Seifert/The Verge

Brooke Lipner, VP of Client Services at Vox Media, would greatly appreciate “calendar management to manage whatever life throws at you – school stuff, work stuff, sports stuff, family stuff, sleep stuff.” Unfortunately, although no organizer works for everyone, we can at least provide some help with The edgefavorite tools for staying organized.


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