You found our list of the best virtual take your child to work ideas!
Virtual take your child to work ideas are ways kids can participate in work-from-home career days. For example: attending mock virtual onboardings, participating Zoom question and answer sessions, and leading virtual meetings. The purpose of virtual take your child to work days is to teach kids about parents’ jobs and industries.
National Bring your Child to Work Day is on April 22.
This list includes:
- virtual bring your child to work day activities
- take your child to work day printables
- online bring your family to work day activities
- virtual take your child to work day tips
Here we go!
Take your child to work day printables
Children learn best by doing. These handy printables are sure to engage and entertain online take your child to work day guests.
Here is a template for Virtual Take Your Child to Work Day Bingo:
Here is a template for Virtual Take Your Child to Work Day Can-You-Find-Its:
Here is a template for self assessments:
Here is a game of office-themed spot the differences:
List of virtual take your child to work ideas
From onboarding to shadowing to kids-only Slack channels, here is a list of the best ideas for virtual take your child to work day.
1. Start the day with a virtual onboarding
The best way to kick off a Zoom bring your family to work day is with an online onboarding session. Welcoming attendees the way you would welcome new employees makes participants feel like team members, not just guests.
The welcome should include a statement of company mission and values, online tour, and icebreaker activities.
For more information, check out our list of virtual onboarding ideas.
2. Plan a company-wide virtual social event
Take your child to work day is a company-wide event, and the day feels more inclusive when you give all attendees a space to socialize. We recommend planning an online social event open to all departments and guests. In the spirit of togetherness, feel free to also invite childless team members. These meetups promote solidarity and team bonding, while also showing off company culture. They are also a good networking tool for parents.
Examples of virtual social events include online trivia competitions, snack breaks, Zoom mixers, virtual parties, and fun team building games. For maximum appeal, make the activities as child-friendly and interactive as possible. These gatherings should be social and relaxing rather than work-intensive. However, curious kids are welcome to ask job-related questions.
For inspiration, check out our list of virtual social event ideas.
3. Shadow different departments throughout the day
During in-person take your child to work days, visitors typically hang around their parents’ departments. However, virtual versions of the occasion give participants the chance to access even more organizational areas.
One of the best virtual take your child to work ideas is to set up a cross-departmental shadowing schedule. Every hour, a different department live streams their workspace. The presenting team gives viewers a crash course in their area of expertise by leading demonstrations, answering questions, showing presentations, and assigning tasks and activities.
This exercise introduces kids to different components of the company, giving guests a deeper understanding of the organization as a whole.
4. Let the children lead a meeting
Letting children lead a short meeting or a section of a longer meeting builds confidence and leadership experience. The practice is especially useful for older kids, who can apply the practical knowledge to school and their own soon-to-be jobs. However, taking an active role in meetings benefits younger children too, since sitting still and listening for extended periods of time often inspires jitters.
Parents can help their children prepare for the meeting by making an agenda, brainstorming talking points, and practicing together. The parent or program organizer can assign a researchable subject for the meeting, or let the child pick the topic. Or, if some kids are too shy to lead the meeting, then instruct them to choose one icebreaker question to ask the group instead.
Before the call, be sure to go over virtual meeting etiquette with the little leader.
5. Hold a virtual scavenger hunt
Scavenger hunts are one of the best activities for virtual bring your child to work day. While you could give players a list of questions to answer and items to find, we recommend a more interactive approach such as lightning scavenger hunts. Lightning scavenger hunts challenge players to race to grab objects before other players. To hold this type of virtual scavenger hunt, read prompts one by one and award points to the first player that shows the item on screen.
Here are sample clues to use for your game:
- Clothing with company logo
- Product company makes
- Sing the company jingle
- Show us on your fingers, the number of years mom/dad has been with company
- Draw the company logo
- Mom/dad’s favorite work snack
You can further customize the hunt to fit your specific industry or organization.
6. Invite guests to a kids club channel on Slack
Most communication in virtual offices takes place via software like Slack. To give attendees firsthand experience with these platforms, create a special channel just for guests. You can make a Slack channel with a name like #kids-club or #take-your-child-to-work-day-2021, and invite guests to join. If you have a wide range of ages, then we recommend creating a separate channel for each age group. All channels should have moderators to ensure that conversation stays safe for work and is age appropriate.
Assigning attendees their own special space will make your guests feel more included. Plus, the kids can entertain each other while the adults continue working. This exercise can also be a valuable networking lesson. To teach participants how to make professional connections, give attendees lists of questions to ask their peers in the chat.
- What does your mom/dad do at the company?
- What is your other parent’s job?
- What was your favorite part of the day so far?
- What do you want to be when you grow up?
- What is your favorite school subject?
- What is the coolest thing you recently learned?
- Are you in any extracurricular activities or clubs?
- How do you spend most of your time?
- What college do you plan to attend?
7. Host a question and answer session
Question and answer sessions are one of the most useful activities for bring your family to work day online. Children of employees participate in this event to learn more about the company and the industry. Q&A sessions provide answers to all their most pressing questions.
Simply invite attendees to join a Zoom meeting, and have experts on hand to answer inquiries. You can collect questions from children beforehand by using a Google Form, or ask a moderator to read questions from the chat box. Typing gives shier participants a chance to ask questions, and prevents kids from accidentally saying embarrassing things.
8. Send a welcome package to guests
Welcome packages can make your event more hands-on and interactive, and are bound to delight your young attendees. The week before the event, mail goodie bags to each guest.
Items to include:
- Special company ID badge
- Welcome letter
- Paper and pens
- Kid-friendly swag like balls, keychains, slime, and stuffed animals
- Sample of company product, if possible
- Work snacks like granola bars, pretzels, and fun-size chocolate
These gifts will help your guests feel welcome, and the tokens serve as fun souvenirs!
9. Take a mid-afternoon break and stretch together
Just like kids need recess, adults need breaks to recharge and exercise. Exercise breaks are great for virtual take your child to work day. Kids have high amounts of energy and relatively short attention spans. Taking a moment to move improves mood, focus, and energy levels for children and adults alike.
First, schedule a movement break on the calendar. You can post the link to the Zoom room directly on the calendar invite, as well as well as in an email or Slack channel. When the time arrives, participants meet up on video call for 10-15 minutes to stretch, do yoga, dance, or perform cardio. If you workout to music, then pick songs that suit your crowd. For example: the Wiggles for younger kids, and top 40 hits for high schoolers.
10. Post a kids page on the company website
Posting a kids page on the company website is a good idea for take your child to work day. This section of your website can contain activities, games, and educational resources for various age groups. For example, worksheets, printable coloring pages, and short articles. Photos might include office pets or company mascots. You could even post a digital calendar featuring upcoming kid-friendly or family-friendly events. A kids’ corner on your website is a great way to engage with younger audiences not just on bring your family to work day, but throughout the entire year.
11. Create a hashtag and invite attendees to share content
Taking pictures of your event can be a challenge, since the occasion is online. You can take screenshots of Zoom meetings, but there is a limit to the variety of your photos. One way to document the day is to ask attendees to snap and share photos. To easily crowdsource content, create a hashtag and ask participants to post to social media using the tag. For example, #TeamBuildingJr2021 or #KidsruleTB21.
Participants can share photos of their workspaces, completed activities, and Zoom screenshots.
This approach is a great way to promote your event and company culture across social channels, and will make kids feel special.
However, some folks may not want to post pictures of their children on social media. We recommend asking these individuals to identify themselves at the start of the event so that you do not unwittingly share a Zoom screenshot of their family post-event. Also, instead of posting face shots, protective parents can upload images of coloring pages, projects, and presentations children completed during the event instead.
Folks who do not use social media at all can email photos to the program coordinator.
12. Email a post-event recap and thank you
Post-event emails provide closure to attendees and organization. These follow-up emails are a great time to summarize and reflect on the event, thank guests, solicit feedback, and entice recipients to attend future functions. Feel free to include pictures, quotes, videos, snapshots, statistics to make the message more interesting and visually appealing. Also, to encourage future participation, send the recap email to the whole company, not just the employees who attended.
More virtual take your child to work day tips
Here are more ways to make virtual bring your son or daughter to work day fun and informative.
13. Keep activities short
Adults might be accustomed to long meetings, but kids are likely to get squirmy. For that matter, adults tune out too if meetings go long, especially if there is little interaction. To keep your agenda engaging, aim to keep activities under an hour and plan periodic breaks.
Attendees might also have to do schoolwork or extracurricular activities on the day of your event, and you do not want to overburden your guests. Plus, keeping activities short ensures that kids will get to explore more areas of the organization.
14. Up the engagement factor
Online events require intentional engagement strategies. The temptation to tune out or multitask during online meetings is strong. When attendees actively participate during virtual events, they are more likely to pay attention and absorb more information. Audience interaction makes events more fun and helps attendees enjoy themselves. If guests have a positive experience at an online event, then they are more likely to attend future functions. Sizable turnouts are a better return on investment and justify all the work that goes into planning special events.
When designing your virtual take your son or daughter to work day, plan interactive activities that get kids moving, socializing, asking questions, and learning. Feel free to poll your potential guests for ideas before the event, and give attendees choices so that they can pick activities that most interest them.
For inspiration, check out our list of virtual employee engagement activities.
15. Leave time for questions and exploration
“Children should be seen and not heard,” is not the right sentiment for take your child to work day. Kids come to learn, and should not just be passive observers. Similarly, try to avoid occupying young guests with busywork to keep them out of the adults’ way. Instead, intentionally structure the day so that children can explore the industry and gain valuable insights about the company. Great ways to engage kids during virtual bring your child to work day include mentor programs, question and answer sessions, and online job shadowing sessions. Kids should not just be watching their parents work, but actively learning alongside them.
16. Recruit high-energy and kid-friendly team members as facilitators
Appealing to children takes a special skill set, especially when presenting online. Executives and experts might impress regular virtual event guests, but kids are more impressed by energy than credentials. When planning your activities, you should recruit friendly and fun-loving team members to keep guests engaged. Facilitators should be patient, and should also know how to explain complicated concepts in simple ways. The ideal online take your child to work day event host understands kids’ perspectives and knows how to keep meetings fun, but orderly.
When parents work from home, every day might feel like bring your child to work day, especially when kids do schooling at home. However, just because children see their parents working from a home office or the dining room table, does not mean they understand what their parent actually does all day. Virtual bring your kid to work day helps children appreciate their parents’ jobs, which might even translate into more respect and a better home work environment for the parent. Plus, kids get to explore different industries and practice good work from home habits.