Resident Initiated Tools for Engagement Programming

Engagement Toolkit – August 2022

In-room engagement has emerged as a silver lining of the pandemic. Moving on from social distancing and isolation, we know that residents continue to enjoy alone time and solitude in their own space, exactly as they did well before COVID. The only difference, is we have learned how to support and provide personalized, meaningful and interactive content to maintain health and wellbeing. Use these tools to help residents think creatively about new ways to engage themselves and each other.


The most important thing we can do for our bodies and minds is to keep moving. Movement is cumulative and all the seconds of movements add up throughout the day and throughout our lives. It is not about the amount of time spent per day moving, it is about the consistency and making a habit of doing something daily.

August Focus: YouTube Yoga/Tai Ch

When the hot summer months lag on, finding a way to exercise indoors is a good alternative. Better yet, Yoga and Tai Chi offer low impact movements that are essential for overall flexibility, balance, strength coupled with eons of mental health benefits. A workout that is both effective and relaxing is the best of both worlds, especially for older adults.

Check out YouTube for Yoga and Tai Chi for older adults. There are hundreds of videos you can try out and add to your weekly programming calendar.

August Tools: Chair Yoga Standing Yoga Tai Chi Benefits Tai Chi For Seniors


Mindset is extremely important during increased alone time. Encourage residents to focus on positivity, peace, gratitude, future goals, hopes, and past memories to help them find good in any day.

August Focus: Bird Watching

Did you know birdwatching is a popular hobby. Someone who does this may be called a birdwatcher, but more often a twitcher or birder. They are usually amateurs. The scientific study of birds is called ornithology. Do you know the benefits of bird watching?  Watching for birds is accessible to almost everyone and offers interaction in and with nature in anyone’s preferred environment.

A little tip… listen, then look!

August Tools: Bird Watching 101

Creative Opportunities

We all flourish when find creative outlets to express ourselves. Creativity is not limited to the arts. Let your mind wander and ask residents how they engage in creative outlets. Some may say board games, cards, photography, writing, poetry, acting, singing, dancing, gardening, flower arranging, designing, sewing or knitting. Be open minded and let others explain options for additional creative opportunities.

August Focus: New Music Monday

Certainly we all have our go to songs and musical favorites, but what about listening to new artists and bands as a way to expand your musical knowledge and show support for those that are just getting started. You know, amateurs! We all have to start somewhere. Search in your local community for aspiring artists or bands and give their songs a listen on YouTube! You may be surprised at the talent that is only a few miles away. Ask other residents and staff if they have any people they know or like to listen to that could spark your curiosity.

If you want to be bold, take a look at the up and coming artists in all mainstream genres. This list is long, but offers a bit of everything to rock, rap, R&B, indie, Reggae, electronic, folk.

August Tools: 100 Essential Emerging Artists For 2022

Mental Stimulation

Novelty is the best approach to counteract a monotonous routine. The mind needs to be stimulated: Learning new skills, trying new things and having new conversations with new people are excellent ways to stay mentally stimulated. Mental stimulation is so much more than brain games or daily puzzles.

August Focus: TV for Knowledge

What? You want me to watch TV shows for knowledge and not just entertainment. That is exactly what we are suggesting. TV does not have to just be an idle way to pass the time if you can find shows that expand your knowledge and teach you something new. Just think of all the conversations you could have with your newly acquired tube knowledge.

Take it a step further, encouraging residents to view an educational program on their own, in their own room or apartment by placing it as a scheduled activity on the calendar. For total engagement, have those that viewed the show meetup afterwards to discuss learnings!

August Tools: The Most Educational TV Channels