A Little Magic in the Air
Once the weather gets a little colder, the energy within a children’s hospital has a drastic shift as child life specialists move into Holiday Planning Mode. This may include coordinating donations, planning holiday parties and activities, scheduling Holiday Toy Shops and of course, addressing all of the day-to-day needs of pediatric patients in the hospital. There is a certain magic that warms the halls of the hospital as decorations go up and staff, patients and families alike look for ways to give back to one another.
We Are All Like Snowflakes
One of the more magical moments of the holiday season is the first snowfall. There is nothing more exciting than going to sleep one night (with your pajamas inside out, of course) and waking up the next morning to a fresh blanket of snow, coating the grass and streets in a blanket of white. It may be cold, but it fills many of us with a warm, cozy feeling. That first snowfall is a perfect time to grab a cup of hot cocoa, with a delicious peppermint stick, and create snowflakes of your own! These beautiful beaded snowflakes can be used to decorate a hospital room or can be gifted to a nurse, doctor, or child life specialist with a note of thanks.
Child life specialists strive to normalize the hospital as much as possible for children and their families. This may even include bringing in a fresh bucket of snow for a patient who has been admitted for an extended period of time. This isn’t always possible due to the patient’s condition, but that doesn’t mean that a child should miss out on the magic and fun of snow. Snow slime can be used for sensory play, to encourage coping during hospitalization or a long waiting room visit. Child life specialists can also add more sensory materials like foam beads, winter-themed charms or shaving cream to create an incredibly engaging play experience!
Cold Winter Breathing
With the winter season also comes along the winter illnesses, like RSV, the flu, and of course, the common cold. Child life specialists, together with your child’s care team, understand the importance of helping children strengthen their lungs so they can breathe easier and get home faster. Snowman pinwheels are a fun and adorable way to encourage children to take big breaths.
Stay Cool with Child Life
Child life specialists understand that being in the hospital during the winter and holiday season can be very difficult. Normalizing the hospital is a top priority, while encouraging positive coping skills and helping children with their treatment plans to get them home as quickly as possible. As always, talk to your child life specialist about more fun ways to make the cold months feel a little warmer in the hospital.