As we continue to brave this pandemic, social distancing has become more of the norm in order to keep our residents safe. Our team has adapted our usual activities to fit the guidelines of the CDC in creative ways. While we look forward to returning to the norm, we’re doing the best we can to provide fun and engagement for our residents during these times.
At Kensington Place, we are adapting to the changing environment in ways that best benefit our residents’ physical and mental health through mainly one-on-one activities. Some ideas for safe social distanced activities that we’d like to share will be outlined.
Turn an ordinary room into a concert hall
While many live shows are postponed, and performers can not visit communities at this time, we have made the most of what we can do, rather than what we cannot. Music therapy is a known practice that greatly helps those with Alzheimer’s and dementia by boosting mood, encouraging conversation and reminisce, and relieving stress.
When a senior affected by memory loss hears a tune that reminds them of childhood, a loved one, or even brings them a smile, caregivers feel a satisfaction like no other.
In one of our memory care neighborhoods, Haven, we have been doing one-on-one activities such as listening to their favorite songs and engaging conversation and singing. It’s a way to safely interact with our residents while also providing them with an activity that doubles as therapy and good fun for both the caregiver and the senior.
Another great one-on-one activity for our residents has been art therapy. While normally a group setting, through these individual sessions we’ve really gotten to know our residents styles! We try to incorporate collaborative work in order to symbolize the community and cohesion during these times as best as we can.
Art therapy is a great way to engage with loved ones who have memory loss. It’s a colorful expression that can translate how a particular resident is feeling or what they want to communicate, but can’t on their own.
Watercolors, acrylics, anything goes! Giving a prompt or just letting them freestyle their creation is all it takes to help a senior incorporate concentration, focus, and ease of mind.
Thanks to the power of today’s technology, we are given more opportunity to think creatively and use it to our advantage. Smartphones and iPads that have Facetime or Skype are able to connect residents not just with their loved ones, but with each other as well. Community is a big part of what we incorporate into our care here at Kensington Place, and we have always kept our two memory care neighborhoods – Haven and Connections – connected through group activities and events.
With social distancing in place, we must continue and keep our residents safe with other alternatives. In order to keep our residents connected and socialized with one another – we’ve done so virtually!
Virtual bingo has been a great tactic. With 10 iPads that we can do video calls from, we are able to host virtual bingo hours very regularly.
Feed your inner bookworm
Reading opens us to new voices, a different time, a far away place, or just a new way of thinking. For many, it takes us to another world.
We love sharing short stories and poems with our residents here at Kensington Place. These are great one-on-one activities that we can personalize to each individual’s favorite subject, engage with them, and provide them company.
Some residents like to read on their own as well. These seniors particularly enjoy the daily chronicles we post.
For seniors who like novels, the current New York Times bestseller list is a great resource for finding the highest ranked reads based on varying genres.
Amazon is another site where many can find plenty of titles to choose from. Ebooks are also available in order to receive new books instantaneously to a desktop, smartphone, or tablet.
Our Kensington Place Promise
At Kensington Place, our promise is to love and care for your loved one as we do our own. We are committed now more than ever to ensuring our residents are staying safe, while providing the best care possible.
We want our seniors to feel connected with loved ones and their neighbors. We don’t know how long we will remain in these times of social distancing, but we are determined to adjust our care in order to maintain the best state of health and happiness.
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