Activities to try while physical distancing
The physical distancing requirements for COVID-19 bring unique challenges, including isolation and disruption to normal routines. We share ideas of activities to engage in from the safety of your own home that can help you remain cognitively stimulated and engaged.
Activities at home
- Try a new baking or cooking recipe together – or call a friend while you both cook the same recipe at your own houses!
- Read a favourite novel aloud together or listen to it as an audio book through Audible or Scribd, online or through apps.
- Connect with friends and family members via phone calls, video chats or letters.
- Send and receive postcards from abroad using websites like Postcrossing which will allow you to send and receive postcards back from random people around the world.
Activities in your own backyard
- Take a walk around your neighbourhood with a member of your household – just make sure to give other walkers lots of physical space.
- Look for details you haven’t noticed before.
- Try looking for different colours or numbers on your walk.
- See how many of one item you can find (i.e. locksmith stickers, bird nests, fallen branches, red cars, etc.).
- Create a bird feeder and watch the birds that visit.
- At nighttime, download a stargazing application for your smartphone to help you identify the stars in the night sky. Or, look up upcoming space station sighting opportunities for your location on NASA’s Spot the Station website.
Taking time to reminisce
- Try looking through or creating new photo albums, making a family tree, creating a playlist of significant songs or going through a jewelry box and discussing where different pieces came from. Websites like Shutterfly.com also allow you to make photo albums online and have the book printed and sent to you.
- You can also discuss old memories with prompting questions such as:
- ‘Who was your favourite teacher in school?’
- ‘What was your first job, and did you like it?’
- ‘Tell me about your wedding day,’ or
- ‘What’s your favourite trip you’ve been on?’.
- Explore virtual exhibits from Canada’s museums and heritage organizations at VirtualMuseum.ca Browse through online exhibitions at the at HistoryMuseum.ca and the Canadian Museum for Human Rights at HumanRights.ca.
- Take a trip to France and explore the Louvre and or head to Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum Stroll through the Smithsonian on a 360-degree walking tour.
- Watch sea otters frolic at the Vancouver Aquarium, catch a glimpse of wild sea lions via OrcaLab, or meet the resident giant pandas Er Shun and Da Mao are live on the Panda Cam at the Calgary Zoo.
- Learn about space exploration at NASA’s Langley Research Centre.
- Search for a virtual hike, like trips to Moraine Lake or Kenai Fjords National Park in Alaska.
- Watch our "Activities to do at home" webinar.
- 40 activities for people living with dementia and care partners booklet from McGill University.