Wisconsin Department of Children and Families

Protecting Children, Strengthening Families, Building Communities

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Resources for families staying Safer at Home

The information below is a collection of resources for families. It includes information to support a variety of needs for families staying Safer at Home. The table can be sorted by clicking the header name in the first row or searched using the box in the upper right corner.

Resource Name Description of Resource How to Access Resource Type
You Are Not Alone A supportive listening helpline from the WI Alliance for Infant Mental Health. 20-minute calls (via video or voice - whatever is preferred) can be scheduled with a volunteer facilitator. A call facilitator with unique skills to support others will be on hand to maintain a supportive listening environment. Callers sign up for time in advance. Calls can be scheduled from 5 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. Sign up at https://wiaimh.org/you-are-not-alone. Mental health
Foster Care and Adoption Resource Center The Foster Care and Adoption Resource Center provides information and resources to not only families, children, and youth, but also to child welfare staff members. Available by phone at 414-475-1246 or toll free at 1-800-762-8063, Monday to Thursday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Child welfare
Family Resource Centers Family Resource Centers (FRCs) provide services and support to strengthen families. FRCs across Wisconsin are community focused and provide parents and caregivers with parent education, tools, and strategies around healthy child development, and they can also provide invaluable information about community resources. Use the regional map to find the local FRC in your area. Parent resource
UW-Extension Financial Resources for Businesses The UW-Extension has created a web page for households, communities, and small businesses about managing finances in tough times, Financial Resources to Help Get Through COVID-19. Online, through UW-Extension's web site. Business and finance
Getting Started with Mindfulness Learn more about implementing mindfulness techniques into your daily work. Online, through Zero to Three's web site. Workplace support
Shelter from the Storm: Resources for Early Care and Education Professionals A resource to help plan for the emotional response to potential disasters, and guidance for supporting young children and their families following a community-wide disaster. Online, through Zero to Three's web site. Early care and education
ChatterPack Professional and engaging resources for providers to help and support children. Choose from a variety of worksheets to help with autism, ADHD, conversation skills, emotions, and more. Online, through ChatterPack's web site. Early care and education
Community Playthings Blog Articles Community Playthings has a variety of blog articles about fine motor development, combining brain and physical activities, learning optimism, and more.  Online, through Community Playthings web site. Early care and education
PBS Wisconsin At-Home Learning PBS Wisconsin has created content that parents, caregivers, teachers and students can use to adapt to home learning. Online, through PBS Wisconsin's web site. Early care and education
GoNoodle A wide variety of activities for kids, their families and teacher. You’ll find games, movement activities – like yoga, and more. Online, through GoNoodle's web site. Early care and education
Hands-on Activities Database The eXtension Alliance for Better Child Care database of hands-on activities contains hundreds of hands-on, ready-to-do activities especially designed to help young children of different ages learn, develop, and flourish. The activities are designed for child care providers, parents, grandparents, and anyone else who works with children. Online, through eXtension's web site. Early care and education
Child Trends: Children's Mental Health Resources for Supporting Children’s Emotional Well-being during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Online, through Child Trends' web site. Mental health
UW-Madison Center for Healthy Minds Learn how to cultivate well-being and relieve suffering through a scientific understanding of the mind. The Children section has a well-being toolkit, articles about mindfulness, empathy-building, kindness and much more. Online, through Center for Healthy Minds' web site. Mental health
Social Connecting While Social Distancing Devereux Center for Resilient Children produced a short YouTube video about Social Connecting While Social Distancing and learn about the importance of staying connected with family and friends. Online, video through YouTube's live streaming service. Mental health
Devereux Center for Resilient Children Blog The blog is a resource for both parents and child care professionals. Posts help teach about children’s emotional intelligence, taking time to laugh with your children, and more. Online, through Devereux Center's web site. Early care and education
Tucker Turtle Takes Time to Tuck and Think at Home A resource for dealing with challenging behaviors. This scripted story assists with teaching the “turtle technique” to help children be less reactive to situations. Online, in both English and Spanish versions Early care and education
HealthyChildren.org A website dedicated to providing information about attaining physical, mental, and social health and well-being for all infants, children, adolescents, and young adults. Online, in both English and Spanish web sites. Early care and education
Three Ways to Talk with Your Children about Coronavirus A Teachstone blog post to help parents make coronavirus conversations with children easier and to combat children’s fears. Online, through Teachstone's web site. COVID-19 resources for kids
Captain Corona and the COVID Warriors ebook Captain Corona takes a group of children on a journey to see 19 groups of brave people whose selfless efforts keep us safe. Online, through Melissa Gratias' web site. COVID-19 resources for kids
Child Mind Institute The Child Mind Institute has put together clinical and supportive resources for families coping with COVID-19. Online, through Child Mind Institute's web site. Also available in Spanish. COVID-19 resources for kids
Why Can’t I Go to School? Conscious Discipline is offering free access to many tools and resources, including a social story, available in multiple languages, to help children process the question, "Why Can't I Go to School?" Online, through Conscious Discipline's web site. COVID-19 resources for kids
Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline The Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline is dedicated to the prevention of child abuse. Serving the U.S. and Canada, the hotline is staffed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with professional crisis counselors who—through interpreters—provide assistance in over 170 languages. The hotline offers crisis intervention, information, and referrals to thousands of emergency, social service, and support resources. All calls are confidential. LiveChat  is available at 1-800-4-A-Child (1-800-422-4453) or online at www.childhelphotline.org. Child welfare
National Parent Helpline Offered through Parents Anonymous, the National Parent Helpline provides parents with emotional support and problem-solving from trained advocates to help parents feel more empowered. Phone line available hours are Monday through Friday, from 12 p.m. to 9 p.m. at 1-855-4A-PARENT (1-855-427-2736) or online at https://www.nationalparenthelpline.org/. Parent resource
Ready4k Text Messages

Ready4K is an evidence-based family engagement curriculum delivered via text messages.

Sign-up online via Ready4k's website Early Care and Education
Science Mom 

A daily show featuring science and math lessons, crafts and games. Hosted by Science Mom and Math Dad, this two-hour livestream is a wonderful way to put some fun learning into your quarantine.

Online, through Facebook Early Care and Education
NAEYC - Support Writing at Home

Young children like to scribble, make marks that look like letters, and play with writing. Chances are, your child will experiment with writing long before he or she learns to read. Learn some ways to help your child learn about and practice writing.

Online, through National Associated for the Education of Young Children's website Early Care and Education

4 Easy Activities to Support Learning While Your Child is at Home

A Teachstone blog post with ways on how parents can connect with their children and promote learning.

Online, through Teachstone's website Early Care and Education

Daily Schedule to Keep Children at Home Engaged

A Teachstone blog post addressing the importance of establishing predictable activities and routines so children know what to expect.

Online, through Teachstone's website Early Care and Education 

24 At-Home Learning Activities to Share with Parents of Young Children

Keeping kids engaged and active (without overusing screens) can be difficult during school and program closures. This blog post brings you 24 learning activities parents can use to boost their child’s skills—and strengthen parent–child connections—from the safety of home.

Online, through Brookes Publishing Lab Early Care and Education 

Community Playthings Blog Articles

Community Playthings has a variety of blog articles about fine motor development, combining brain and physical activities, learning optimism, and more.

Online, through Community Playthings website Early Care and Education

Active Early – A Wisconsin Guide for Improving Childhood Physical Activity

During a time when kids might be getting more screen time than physical activity, this is a resource to help parents and teachers add physical activities to daily routines.

Online, through the Department of Health Services website

Also available in Spanish

Early Care and Education

Healthy Bites – A Wisconsin Guide for improving Childhood Nutrition

Healthy Bites is a companion book to Active Early, and promotes good nutrition to combat childhood obesity.

Online, through the Department of Public Instructions website

 

Also available in Spanish

Early Care and Education 

eXtension Alliance for Better Child Care -- Hands-on Activities Database

The eXtension Alliance for Better Child Care database of hands-on activities contains hundreds of hands-on, ready-to-do activities especially designed to help young children of different ages learn, develop, and flourish. The activities are designed for child care providers, parents, grandparents, and anyone else who works with children.

Online, through eXtension's website Early Care and Education

ABCMouse.com Early Learning Academy

ABCMouse.com is for children ages 2-8 and offers a free 30-day trial. Children can learn math, reading, science, and arts.

Online, through ABCMouse.com Early Care and Education

Khan Academy

Khan Academy offers a huge variety of remote learning resources and daily learning schedules for students ages 2-18.

Online, through Khan Academy's website Early Care and Education 

Scholastic Learn at Home

Parents can sign up for a free Scholastic Learn at Home newsletter with tips and book recommendations for helping kids learn at home.

Online, through Scholastic's website Early Care and Education
BrainPOP

BrainPOP helps parents and learners stay informed and on-track with free access to science, social studies, math, and much more during school closures.

Online, through BrainPOP's website Early Care and Education
Circle Family Activity Collection 

The CIRCLE Family Activity Collection translates child development research into practice by providing a variety of hands-on activities that families can do at home. This collection is organized around seven learning domains: Language & Communication, Reading & Writing, Math, Science, Social & Emotional, Physical Development, and Art & Sensory.

Online, through Circle Family's website Early Care and Education

Vroom

Vroom helps parents boost their child’s learning with fun and educational text messages to use during the time they already spend together.

Sign-up online through Vroom's website

Parent Resource 

Bright by Text

Bright by Text provides free tips, information, and resources to help all parents and caregivers give every child a bright beginning.

Sign-up online through Bright by Text's website Parent Resource 

San Diego Zoo

A website just for kids with amazing videos, activities, and games.

Online, through the San Diego Zoo's website.  Virtual Field Trip

Yellowstone National Park

Take your family on a virtual tour of Yellowstone National Park! Online, through the National Park Service's website Virtual Field Trip 
Explore Mars! 

Explore the surface of Mars on the Curiosity Rover.

Online, through Google and NASA's website Virtual Field Trip 

Virtual Farms Tours in Canada

Take 11 virtual tours of various types of farms – from mink, pigs, and cows, to apples and eggs.

Online, through Farm Food's website Virtual Field Trip 

Virtual Wisconsin Dairy Farm Tour

Visit Hasel Farms in Lake Mills, WI, home to over 400 milking cows.

Online, through Vita Plus' website. Virtual Field Trip 

Monterey Bay, California Live Cams

View the aviary, coral reef, sea nettles, sea otters, penguins, sharks and more!

Online, through the Monterey Bay Aquarium's website Virtual Field Trip 

Houston Zoo Animal Cams

Tune in to the Houston Zoo Webcams and enjoy a live look at animals that call the Houston Zoo home!

Online, through the Houston Zoo's website

Virtual Field Trip 

Milwaukee County Zoo Web Cams

See what’s happening with the gorillas, polar bears, tigers, penguins, and more!

Online, through Zoo View's website Virtual Field Trip 

Henry Vilas Zoo

Keep in touch with the zoo’s keepers and animals with Virtual Zookeeper Chats.

Online, through Henry Vilas Zoo's website Virtual Field Trip

The Great Wall of China

Take a virtual tour of China’s most famous attraction, the Great Wall, with over 2,000 years of history, stretching more than 3,000 miles.

Online, through the China Guide's website Virtual Field Trip 

The Louvre

Travel to Paris, France to see the amazing works of art at the Louvre via a virtual tour.

Online, through The Louvre's website Virtual Field Trip
Wisconsin Historical Society 

View the Society’s world-class collections of artifacts and information about Wisconsin history.

Online, through the Wisconsin Historical Society's website Early Care and Education 

Got Dirt? Gardening Initiative

Never gardened? The Got Dirt? Garden Toolkit is designed to provide simple, step-by-step plans for starting a garden. Even better, the toolkit also includes tips from garden experts and garden success stories from around Wisconsin.

Online, through the Department of Health Services website Parent Resource
P.E. With Joe

Families can participate in fun physical education with Joe – a United Kingdom P.E. teacher on YouTube.

Online, through YouTube.  Physical Education

Yoga for Kids

Cosmic Kids Yoga is making yoga fun for your kids! Enjoy active screen time and get up and move with your kids.

Online, through YouTube Physical Education