As Australia and the world continues to fight COVID-19, some of our favourite celebrities and companies are stepping up to allow us all to still have fun and enjoy everyday activities, just from the comfort of our lounge rooms.
Check out our list and get ready for a whole lotta virtual fun.
Safety first! Your children can still getting the life-saving education they need with a Kids Alive Couch Concert Series
Instead of travelling the country to share their water safety message, former Olympic swimming coach Laurie Lawrence and the educators from ‘Kids Alive – Do The Five’ have had to think differently. The result is the Kids Alive Couch Concert Series, a collection of virtual events including dance concerts, puppet shows, book readings and craft activities.
Unfortunately, drowning still remains one of the leading causes of death for kids under five in Australia, with most drownings occurring in a pool, but with many also occurring in waterways, bathtubs and spa baths.
Tune into Dreamworks hit shows like Trolls: The Beat Goes on and Kung Fu Panda: The Paws of Destiny
Foxtel customers are in for a treat this month. For all of June, small and big fans alike will gain exclusive access to a pop-up DreamWorks channel.
Viewers can join Poppy, Branch and all of the Troll Village in Trolls: The Beat Goes On! or follow Po in an epic adventure series, Kung Fu Panda: The Paws of Destiny, as he embarks on a journey to teach four mischievous panda cubs who are destined to save the world.
The list of cool shows available is a long one, but also included in the line-up are Turbo FAST, Where’s Wally?, Tales of Arcadia: Trollhunters, The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle, Dawn of the Croods, The Mr. Peabody & Sherman Show
The channel will be available on Foxtel (Channel 700) for all residential subscribers from Monday, June 1 to Tuesday, June 30.
If you loved the Trolls movie, you must check out the TV series adaptation. It’s upbeat and it’ll be up your alley.
The Duchess of Cornwall, is taking on her first ever acting role since joining the Royal Family to read Roald Dahl with a host of other familiar faces
The Roald Dahl Story Company has gathered an all-star cast for a live reading of the beloved book, James and the Giant Peach, exclusively on its YouTube channel.
Oscar-winning director Taika Waititi, along with some big Hollywood stars including Ryan Reynolds, Cate Blanchett, Meryl Streep, Cara Delevingne and Australia’s own Chris and Liam Hemsworth, have teamed up to read the classic children’s novel — and it’s for a great cause.
Even the Royal family is in on the gig, with HRH the Duchess of Cornwall taking on her first acting gig since joining the Royal family to help with the reading. And she does a fantastic job, despite telling Taika: “I’m not much of an actor”, before she begins reading! You can see her in action in the video shared above.
Her Royal Highness tells Taika: “I’m not much of an actor”, before she begins reading!
The collaboration between Roald Dahl Story Company, Taika Waititi and the star-studded line-up of guests will raise money for Partners In Health, a global health non-profit who are on the front line of the fight against COVID-19 in the most vulnerable parts of the world, with the Roald Dahl Story Company committed to donation matching of $1 million.
The big-name celebrities will retell the beloved children’s novel James and the Giant Peach in full, across 10 episodes. New episodes will be published every Monday, Wednesday and Friday on YouTube.
Join Elmo and his celeb pals for a playdate
If you have an Elmo fan in your house, they are going to be in for a treat with this special. Sesame Street: Elmo’s Playdate, includes all the big names, like Cookie Monster and Grover, from Sesame Street plus celebrity guests Anne Hathaway, Lin-Manuel Miranda, and Tracee Ellis Ross.
The A-list stars and Sesame Street friends will sing songs, play games, and take silly dance breaks. Tracee Ellis Ross plays a game of “Elmo Says,” singer Lin-Manuel Miranda pops in for a few rounds of Old McDonald Had a Farm while actress and mum-of-two Anne Hathaway and Elmo get moving with Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes, and more.
Sesame Street: Elmo’s Playdate is on ABC Kids on Saturday 30th May, 2020 at 9.30am, as well as ABC iview and ABC Kids app.
We’re pretty sure Anna Hathaway is having an absolute ball.
Have Michelle Obama read your child a book
The former US First Lady will be hosting a livestream story time session for children over the next month. The four-week series is called, Mondays with Michelle Obama.
“As a little kid, I loved to read aloud. And when I became a parent, I found such joy in sharing the magic of storytelling with my own children—and then later, as First Lady, with kids everywhere,” Michelle said on the PBS site.
“At this time when so many families are under so much stress, I’m excited to give kids a chance to practice their reading and hear some wonderful stories (and to give parents and caretakers a much-needed break).”
The four books the mum-of-two will read will are Julia Donaldson’s The Gruffalo, illustrated by Axel Scheffler, on April 20; Tom Fletcher’s There’s a Dragon in Your Book, illustrated by Greg Abbott, on April 27; Eliza Wheeler’s Miss Maple’s Seeds on May 4; and Eric Carle’s The Very Hungry Caterpillar on May 11.
The show will be livestreamed simultaneously on PBS KIDS’ Facebook page and YouTube channel, and on Penguin Random House’s Facebook page, and “will remain available for viewing on demand on all of those platforms immediately thereafter.”
Participate in a ballet lesson
Emma ‘Wiggle’ Watkins recently live-streamed a ballet class for her bow-tiful little fans.
The live event was loved by aspiring ballet dancers and the comments flooded into the comments section on Emma Facebook page.
“Great job Emma our children (and parents) really need The Wiggles now more than ever to help keep our children entertained- thanks 🙏🏻💛” wrote one grateful mother.
If you missed it, catch up by checking it out on her Facebook page here.
Visit the zoo
Animal lovers rejoice as the zoo can come to you! Melbourne Zoo and Werribee Open Range Zoo is live-streaming several of their animal exhibits, including the giraffe, penguin, lion and child snow leopards. Click here for details.
Read, draw and play games via a video-calling app
Caribu is a video-calling app that is offering free services with unlimited access during this tough time. Download the app and create an account to connect with friends and families anywhere in the world, and read stories, play games and complete colouring activities together.
Workout with Sam Wood
Former Bachelor star turned fitness trainer, Sam Wood is holding live workouts, Mondays to Fridays at 9am on his 28 By Sam Wood Facebook page and you can get the kids moving on Tuesday and Thursday mornings.
Posting to Instagram, Sam wrote:
“Tuesday’s and Thursday’s will be kids workouts (parents/grownups can do these too). With so many kids home from school this will be a great way to keep them active and have some fun at such a hard time for so many.”
Get creative in a virtual art classes
Author and artist of Don’t let the Pigeon Stay up Late, Mo Willems is offering free ‘lunch doodle’ sessions. In a series of videos, budding artists can draw, doodle and explore new ways of writing. Grab some paper and pencils and if your little one posts their art to social media, add the hashtage #MoLunchDoodles. Click here for details.
Stream free kids books
Calling all bookworms! For as long as schools are closed (or as long as parents are urged not to send their children), Audible will allow you to stream kid stories, including titles across six different languages. All stories are free to stream on your desktop, laptop, phone or tablet.
Visit a museum
Go on an excursion to a museum! Google Arts and Culture has partnered with over 2,500 museums and galleries around the world to offer virtual tours. Some of the many cool options include New York’s Museum of Modern Art and Amsterdam’s Van Gogh Museum. Click here for details. The Louvre in Paris is doing free virtual tours.
Listen to a celebrity read children’s books
Margot Robbie, Reeese Witherspoon, Natalie Portman, Jimmy Fallon and Pink are some some of the many celebrities who are reading children’s books. In partnership with Save the Children the stories stories on Instagram and Facebook and help provide fun and education to kids and parents stuck at home during the coronavirus outbreak.
Do a kid-friendly yoga, mindfulness class
It’s a stressful time for everyone right now, including little ones as they feel our stress and our out of their regular routine. For kid-friendly yoga, mindfulness and relaxation designed specially for kids aged 3+, click here.
Dance with Lady Gaga’s former backup dancer
Got a little one that is missing their regular dance class? Lady Gaga’s former backup dancer, Mark Kanemura, is hosting virtual dance sessions on his Instagram account.
Work out with P.E. Joe
Joe Wicks, a P.E. teacher from the UK has gone viral, streaming live workout videos to millions of people currently in self-isolation, via his You Tube channel, The Body Coach. The 30 minute exercise sessions are designed for kids but plenty of parents are also joining in to get fit.
“We’ve had Jamaica, India, Uruguay, Australia, New Zealand and people from Scandinavia. There are so many countries taking part in this because they want to see their kids exercising,” he says. “I’m taking that role on and helping people get through this time.”
Joe is 33 and a father of two. He’s also been called a clean-cut version of Game of Thrones’ Jon Snow. Now, who’s ready to tune in? Click here.
Do a Frozen-themed yoga session
Little fans of Anna and Elsa now have no excuses when it comes to stretching out their. Jaime Amor is the star, writer, and co-owner of Cosmic Kids Yoga on YouTube. She delivers 30 minute yoga videos for children, where little ones can choose to downward dog along to Frozen, Trolls, Star Wars or a range of other themed-videos.
“Frozen was a heck of a lot of work. It’s like a half-hour-long one woman show, like doing a weird interpretive dance,” says Jaime.
Click here for details.
Watch a free science show
Street Science offering free science shows, online. Appropriate for all ages as older children will understand the science behind the fun while younger kids will love watching the amazing experiments. Register here for details.
Live streams: Quokka cuddles and penguin feeds!
Cuteness alert! SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium and WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo have an adorable schedule of live streams to brighten up your days. Um hello, like you can sit in your lounge room and watch cute little penguins you waddle, hop, slip and slide around their Sydney home. Sound good? Click for SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium or WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo.