As always, this child life month my team and I had tons of fun providing child life magic to our patients, families, staff, and our own department! Here’s a list of some of the things we did:
- Set up a display cabinet in our hospital’s main hallway with photos printed on canvases depicting what child life is all about
- Created fun events for patients and families through out the month including a kick off carnival, teddy bear clinic, and child life birthday party.
- Went to each unit with a spin the wheel game for staff. Staff were encouraged to participate and answer child life trivia correctly. If they did, they were given a distraction badge buddy and bubbles and entered into a raffle for a small duffel bag filled with child life goodies!
- Engaged our own department in a “secret santa” type of activity through out the month where we left our buddy small clues and gifts throughout the month of March ending in a big reveal (shout out to Hayley for coming up with this!)
- Team lunch provided by our amazingly supportive and inspiring leadership team
What are some fun things your team did for child life month?
Another fun event my team and I hosted in honor of child life month was a teddy bear clinic. This event is usually a great hit with the patients and families.
We started off by giving each “doctor” their patients chart. Here we included some information on the “top 10 reasons to call your child life specialist” as well as information on the different stations at the event.
These are all of our “bear-y” sick patients. We contacted our marketing department and they had many bears with our hospital’s logo that they were happy to donate to us!
This first station is where our “doctors” would gown up and get ready to treat their patients. This was a very popular station and it was so adorable to see kids proudly walking around looking like doctors.
The next station was triage followed by the IV station. We had a CCLS at each of these stations helping guide the “doctors” as they cared for their patient. Here is where we were able to sneak in our education & address misconceptions.
Finally, the patients were able to do an x-ray by dipping our demo bear into white paint and smudging it on black paper. This was a very fun and creative way to incorporate medical art into our teddy war clinic.
Some other activities we had at the clinic were a photo booth station with props and a table with markers, crayons, and construction paper for the “doctors” to write a get well soon card to a patient in the hospital. We also included band-aids and gauze at this station to continue to promote medical art. Needless to say our clinic was a big success and all of our teddy bears were cured. Thanks, doctors!
A medical myster box
Saline bag toss
How have you kicked off child life month at your hospital?
As a 1 person program working solely in the ER, here’s how I’m celebrating!
- Implementation of a Child Life newsletter for the nurses lounge.
- A Child Life trivia quiz! Everyone fills out a sheet & returns it to me. I will pick random sheets to “grade” and the first person I pick that gets all the answers correct, wins!
- A baby photo contest – staff bring in a baby photo and it goes up on our board. First person to guess everyone correctly wins.
- Child life table teepees for the waiting room.
- Child life coloring sheets for the waiting room.
- A day of having food catered for the department (THANK YOU upper management!)
- A Child life “emergency kit” for the doctors lounge.
- Child life month bulletin board.
- Guest spot on our PEDS ED monthly newsletter!
- Bubble rounds! Child life assistant and I will randomly go room to room and blow bubbles for the patients to celebrate Child Life month – creatively thought up by one of my Child Life Assistants – (funny with the teen patients & a great way to raise awareness!)
So proud to see these Child Life Specialists that taught me everything I know on the news! Click the link above to see the amazing work the Child Life team is doing at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital in Hollywood, Florida. I’ll always have a soft spot for the hospital where I did my internship. Happy Child Life month!
As you all may know, this is my first year celebrating Child Life Month as a Child Life Specialist! Very exciting!! However, I am the only CLS in my department so it’s really up to me how I decide to celebrate Child Life month (no pressure, right?!). Being that I started working in January, I am still too shy to go all out and make shirts, organize a flash mob, create games with prizes, call the news stations, etc. So, here’s what I’ve done!
– A banner (Mara Mi tablecloth target- on sale!) which I hung above a main intersection in our unit. *Warning* the paint bleeds through the tablecloth & paper placed between floor & tablecloth will stick to the tablecloth when dry. #RookieMistake
– We have a bulletin board in our staff bathroom which needed a little tlc so I (with the help of some fabulous nurses that are very excited for Child Life month) fixed up the bulletin board & added a fun little Child Life info sheet which I’ll change weekly for the month of March. The info sheet includes: child life tip, did you know…?, get to know your child life specialist (2 truths & 1 lie about me), & a favorite child life quote.
– I was also able to gain custody (for this month at least) of a bulletin board in a high-traffic area in our unit! I dressed it up with “Lucky to have Child Life” (idea inspired by a post on the Child Life Council blog) & a “who, what, when, where, & why” about child life (info from the Child Life Council as well).
– I wanted to do a little more so I met with my boss to see what she could help me with to celebrate Child Life month & I was able to write a post for the monthly newsletter and have food ordered for the staff on a date of my choice.
Not too shabby for a first timer, if I do say so myself! The staff in my ER is great and really supporting my role as a CLS. From doctors and nurses giving me excellent referrals, to staff members asking if they can help me bag crayons or clean toys, to even brainstorming child life month activities! I may be the only cls in my department but I’m definitely not alone :).
The Child Life team at Joe DiMaggio Childre’s Hospital (where I completed my internship) made this AWESOME video for child life month! I love it, girls!
I was recently inspired by one of my previous posts with this band-aid art idea. My twist however was that the children who made these “get well cards” could either keep them or leave them with me and I’d take it to a patient in the hospital. It was a great hit! Children and teens of all ages came by to make some and even some parents! It was very fun to see how creative children can be with medical supplies.
Things I used for this craft:
– band aids
– construction paper
– googly eyes