Early in the COVID-19 pandemic, Marshfield Clinic Health System wanted to provide fun for Wisconsin kids while they were out of school and at home because of the virus. It was an opportunity to help parents and caretakers who found themselves becoming teachers and entertainers.
A project was created to compile top-quality, interactive, educational activities to help engage children in fun learning activities and help families stay happy, healthy and busy. Collaborators included the Center for Community Health Advancement (CCHA) and Marshfield Clinic Health System, working with Marshfield Medical Center’s Children’s Hospital.
Each week’s offering included live presentations through CCHA’s Facebook page and provided daily hands-on activities. Subjects included art, science, physical education, social and emotional learning, math, reading and writing, music and STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics). A downloadable calendar provided a suggested daily schedule of lessons for the week so parents and caretakers had quality, educational content at their fingertips.
Each day offered hands-on learning activities for five different subject areas uploaded to CCHA’s website. A weekly downloadable PDF calendar was also available showing that week’s subject schedule.
Additionally, live presentations were given three times weekly via CCHA’s Facebook page. Laura Zelenak, CCHA health educator, scheduled videos and helped presenters with setup and preparation.
“We've shared educational and entertaining information with thousands of community members, highlighting talented people we have in this health system," Zelenak said.
To make it truly interactive, families were encouraged to post picture/video comments or tag CCHA on social media to feature kids and their activities. Especially fun was to see science projects and drawings kids made, their dance moves and sports skills, hearing about their favorite books and more.