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 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?’.

Virtual tours

More resources