Spring is upon us. The snow is falling less, the sun is shining more, the rain is starting to work its magic on the flowers and Easter is around the corner. For the month of April, we’re sharing Easter-themed activities, funny April Fool’s Day activities, and a unique program idea to help your residents get a kickstart on their spring cleaning.
Baskets galore! Bring on all the baskets and have your residents do a traditional Easter Egg Hunt, either indoors or outdoors. You can keep it traditional and place little chocolate eggs around your community or shake things up by putting larger plastic eggs filled with special items or prizes. For your residents who have more limited mobility, you can set up a virtual egg hunt, where they can try to locate eggs hidden in a picture on a large screen. Check out YouTube for some ideas!
If your community is allowing visitors and this idea can be done safely, consider hosting an egg hunt for children and grandchildren from residents' families. Intergenerational programming provides much joy and benefits to older adults and they can participate in a variety of ways:
Or, they can simply show up and watch the delight of children laughing and having fun as they search for all the eggs.
A great way to get creative over the Easter holiday is to decorate Easter bonnets using Easter-themed craft supplies. Use chicks, eggs, paper, and daffodils to decorate large straw hats for your residents to wear to Easter meals or parties.
Easter wouldn't be Easter without decorating a few eggs. This is a great low-cost activity for all your residents to get involved in. All you need are some hard-boiled eggs and art supplies, like markers, paint, and stickers.
You could make this a fun competition by having a contest for the best-decorated egg. You could also use your resident's eggs as centerpieces for your Easter dinner.
Host a special Easter Tea party for your residents and their loved ones.
You can encourage residents to help prepare by scheduling programs to make decorations and centerpieces, as well as encourage them to help set up and get everything ready.
You could even do some Easter baking together for a take-home gift doing chocolate rice cakes or hot cross buns.
April 1st is a great day to book a comedian to come to your community to do a comedy show. Or better yet, plan a stand-up comedy show and have your residents share their comedic talents and funny jokes with others. You can help your more introverted residents by sharing some comedy material to use. Set up your lounge or dining room with a stage and a mic and create a fun title for your show! There will be some great bellow laughs with this activity.
A fun way to celebrate April Fool's Day is to encourage certain residents at your community to choose and wear an outfit you would never be caught dead in or that is very out of place for April: mismatched clothing, lots of different patterns together, a bathing suit and sun hat. The best part will be the looks that you get from your residents and behaving like there isn't anything out of the ordinary!
This is a fun activity to plan with a group of your residents in advance.
Get them together, pull out a whiteboard and get brainstorming on they can prank the larger resident group in your community. An example would be playing a funny trick in the dining room at dinner. The group could all eat their dessert first, stand up and start singing a song at a specific time or act out a dramatic scene.
It will leave your staff and other residents who aren't in on the prank confused, until the group shout's out, "April Fool's!"
April Fool's Day is all about having some good laughs. So why not schedule a laughter yoga program on the 1st of April?
Laughter has significant benefits to one's overall wellbeing and mood and scheduling some time for it on your calendar may be just what your residents need. How do you laugh when nothing’s funny? Just open your mouth into a wide smile and force the breath out. It may feel silly at first, but when you’re in a group of people committed to laughing, the make-believe version often transforms into the real thing.
Here are some exercises to try:
Spring cleaning can feel overwhelming for some and exciting and satisfying to others. Why not support both types of people by having a party to help look forward to spring cleaning and decluttering. At the beginning of Spring, you can host an auction party to help your residents get rid of unwanted possessions and clean out their homes.
While cleaning, residents can pull together items they want to auction and pool them in a large space in the home. From there, residents and staff can help price goods, decide if the auction will be live or silent, and decide on who will play the auctioneer. Participants could include residents, staff, and loved ones and you could make it fun by doing a themed auction with costumes, setting up a photo booth, and more!
Did these activity ideas spark your creativity? Get more inspiration with these April Activity Ideas for Senior Living Communities or plan ahead with these Senior Community Activity Ideas to Kick Off the Summer!
Katie is a member of Welbi’s Customer Experience team! She has a background in communications and recreation and is passionate about older adults, exercise, coffee and people.
Holly is a member of Welbi’s Marketing team! She has a background in communications and marketing, and is a compassionate individual who loves team work, story telling, and wellness.
Wendy is a student in the Honours BA in English program at the University of Ottawa, where she has won numerous awards for her writing.
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