Coronavirus: Parenting in the Time of Corona

Conversation Guide

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COVID-19 has brought many new challenges to families. So much of the way we parent has shifted under our feet in a very short amount of time, from schooling and extracurriculars to socializing. Our homes have transformed into offices, distance learning hubs, and the main setting for socializing. What has this adaptation looked like in your home? During this conversation we explore the many new and often challenging facets of parenting during a global pandemic.

Let's Get Started!

Living Room Conversations offers a simple, sociable and structured way to practice communicating across differences while building understanding and relationships. Typically, 4-7 people meet in person or by video call for about 90 minutes to listen to and be heard by others on one of our nearly 100 topics. Rather than debating or convincing others, we take turns talking to share and learn. No preparation is required, though background links with balanced views are available on some topic pages online. Anyone can host using these italicized instructions. Hosts also participate. Some hosts may offer a Q & A after Closing.

Introductions:
Why We're Here (~10 min)

Each participant has 1 minute to introduce themselves.

Share your name, where you live, what drew you here, and if this is your first conversation.

Conversation Agreements:
How We'll Engage (~5 min)

These will set the tone of our conversation; participants may volunteer to take turns reading them aloud. (Click here for the full conversation agreements.)

  • Be curious and listen to understand.
  • Show respect and suspend judgment. 
  • Note any common ground as well as any differences. 
  • Be authentic and welcome that from others. 
  • Be purposeful and to the point. 
  • Own and guide the conversation. 

Question Rounds:
What We’ll Talk About

Optional: a participant can keep track of time and gently let people know when their time has elapsed.

Round 1:
Getting to Know Each Other (~10 min)

Each participant can take 1-2 minutes to answer one of these questions:

  • What are your hopes and concerns for your family, community and/or the country?
  • What would your best friend say about who you are?
  • What sense of purpose / mission / duty guides you in your life?

Round 2:

Coronavirus: Parenting in the Time of Corona (~40 min)

One participant can volunteer to read the paragraph at the top of the web page.

Take ~2 minutes each to answer a question below without interruption or crosstalk. After everyone has answered, the group may take a few minutes for clarifying or follow up questions/responses. Continue exploring additional questions as time allows.

  • What reactions, emotions, or behaviors have you noticed from your children during the pandemic? What have you noticed with yourself? What have you noticed about you and your partner’s relationship? Has anything surprised you?
  • What has been your experience working or carrying out other responsibilities while also providing support to your children as they learn from home? If your access to child care has been impacted, what’s that been like for you? 
  • What are the biggest adjustments you have made in your home due to the pandemic? What has that been like for you and your children?
  • What are your hopes and fears about how parenting and families may change moving forward? How our education system or extracurricular involvement may change?
  • What do you hope is learned, for your children, for yourselves, for our society, after going through this?

Round 3:
Reflecting on the Conversation (~15 min)

Take 2 minutes to answer one of the following questions:

  • What was most meaningful / valuable to you in this Living Room Conversation?
  • What learning, new understanding or common ground was found on the topic?
  • How has this conversation changed your perception of anyone in this group?
  • Is there a next step you would like to take based upon the conversation?

Closing (~5 min)

  • Give us feedback! Find our feedback form here.
  • Donate! Make more of these possible; give here.
  • Join or host more conversations! With a) this group by exchanging your emails; b) others in person and/or by video call online. Get more involved or learn how to host here.

Thank You!