Child Life Month Activity Ideas
Looking for some creative ways to celebrate Child Life Month in your hospital or work place? The following series of ideas and templates is designed to kick-start your child life program's observance of Child Life Month.
However you choose to celebrate, remember to have fun and share your pride in the great work you do! And don’t forget to tell the Association of Child Life Professionals about your successes.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org with your adaptations of these ideas, or with new activities so we can add them to the list here to inspire others.
- Conduct an in-service or brown bag lunch for colleagues and/or families on topics such as coping with a parental illness; mental illness; comfort positioning during medical interventions; or other specialty topics. You could also highlight a special aspect of your program (e.g., animal visits, outdoor play, pre-admission tours).
2. Present an educational session on a topic of interest or ethical challenge to the interdisciplinary team, at grand rounds, to nursing or medical students, etc.
3. Plan a child life staff retreat and incorporate goal planning, education, team building, and self-care techniques.
4. Host a developmental fair for staff, patients, and families. Set up booths in a public area for different age groups. Each age group booth could include safety tips, developmental milestones, and recommended books and toys for that age group. Have handouts available at each booth with staff present to answer any questions.
5. Host a Child Life Open House. Staff can break into groups and create booths along the themes of specialties such as medical play, coping, playroom programming, etc. There can also be a general booth that has the title: “What do Certified Child Life Specialists do?” With the subtitles: Provide Play Opportunities…; Promote Family-Centered Care, which…; Facilitates Medical Play, which…The visitors could receive a paper doll with bio info including age, diagnosis, etc. As the visitors tour the booths, each CLS can address how child life could meet the patient’s needs relating to the information provided.
6. Send short educational child life messages via email at work. Topics could include: Ways to help a child understand serious illness; Ways to communicate with children regarding death and loss; Ways to prepare children for hospitalization/ illness/ treatment etc…
7. Host a Child Life Jenga or Child Life Jeopardy Game
for members of the healthcare team or for patients and families.