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Changing playtime while hunkering down

March 28, 2020 – FYI

Juneau is in hunker down mode, along with the rest of the state. Many families with children have already been changing the way they play in order to prevent the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). If your family hasn’t, the time to do so is now:

  • Indoor play dates should be avoided completely in order to limit any contact with the disease. Instead, families should prioritize playing outside with immediate family only.
  • Choose outdoor activities that can be done with distance, like hiking and biking in order to maintain 6 feet from any non-family members in the area. Avoid activities like football or tag that involve direct contact with others. While playing during this time, please be sure to social distance, wash hands after being outside, and do your best to keep kids from touching their faces.
  • Picking physical activities other than the playground is best. Playgrounds are a place where children will want to interact and it will be difficult to have them remain 6 feet from each other. It is also a place where parents could find themselves accidentally gathering too closely with others.
  • Use indoor activity breaks (e.g. stretch breaks, dance breaks) throughout the day to help your child stay healthy and focused.

In general, kids and parents should do several things to prevent getting and spreading illness:

  • Clean hands often using soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizer
  • Cover their own mouths and nose when coughing or sneezing, either through coughing into their elbows or ideally using a tissue. Then, immediately throw the tissue away and wash their hands.
  • Avoid touching their faces, especially with unwashed hands. That includes rubbing eyes or touching noses or mouths.
  • Don’t share cups, water bottles, utensils or food.
  • Clean and disinfect high-touch surfaces daily in household common areas (e.g. tables, hard-backed chairs, doorknobs, light switches, remotes, handles, desks, toilets, sinks)

Here’s more information on children and COVID-19 from the CDC.