It is important that volunteers are able to facilitate activities that are hospital appropriate and that children can continue to have fun when they are in hospital for the short or long term.
There are lots of different types and ways to play and it is important to remember that not all children like all the same activities and to pay attention to what each child enjoys doing, what they choose to do and what activities they can stick at for longer periods of time.
Even when fully well and at ease, on average a child will be able to focus on any given task for approximately 2-5 minutes per year of age e.g., a four-year-old should be able to focus in the range of 8-20 minutes. This may be reduced because of illness, fatigue, or simply the hospital environment.
The following are tips for adapting play activities in the areas CIH volunteer’s support children, young people and their families:
Play in the Playroom:
Play in the Ward:
Play in Isolation Rooms:
Play in the Emergency Department:
Play in the Outpatients Department:
Play involving the whole family:
Switching Up “Play” For Adolescents: