More and more often, co-parents are taking advantage of virtual visitation arrangements. This ability to connect with one parent when a child is residing with the other can help both parents maintain a consistent and meaningful relationship with their children, regardless of the particulars of their parenting schedule. Virtual visitation, which includes video calls, messaging and other distance-based communication methods, can help bridge the gap between scheduled periods of in-person parenting time.
As technology evolves, so do the resources available to enhance these virtual interactions, making them more engaging and fulfilling for both parents and kids. If you are a co-parent and you’re unsure of how to make the most of your virtual visitation time, consider some of the following apps and platforms that can help you connect with your kids in ways they’ll likely appreciate.
Video calling platforms and apps
Platforms like Zoom, Skype, and FaceTime have become household names, offering reliable video-calling capabilities that are essential for virtual visitation. These platforms provide a personal connection through face-to-face interaction, allowing parents and children to share experiences, read bedtime stories or simply talk about their day. Many of these services offer additional features like virtual backgrounds and filters to add a fun element to calls.
Shared online activities
Several websites and apps allow co-parents and children to engage in activities together online. For instance, platforms like Caribu integrate books and games into a video calling app, enabling parents and kids to read, draw and play games together during their call. This can make virtual visitation more interactive and enjoyable, closely mimicking the experience of spending time together in person. For older kids, shared video gaming experiences, quiz challenges and content viewing tools may be preferable.
For older children with access to smartphones or tablets, secure messaging apps can provide a continuous line of communication with their parents. Apps like WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger Kids (designed with parental controls) allow for texting, sharing photos and brief video messages.
Leveraging these resources can significantly enhance virtual visitation arrangements, making them more engaging, interactive and meaningful. Just keep in mind that as your relationship with your child is unique, you can choose to utilize – or forgo – any resources that do or don’t work for you and your child specifically.