Resident Initiated Tools for Engagement Programming

Engagement Toolkit – April 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 time per day; it is about consistency and making a habit of doing something daily.

April Focus: Core Strength

Core exercises train the muscles in your pelvis, lower back, hips and abdomen. This leads to better balance, stability and posture.  There are hundreds of ways to engage the core far beyond the stereotypical sit-up. Any exercise that involves the use of your abdominal and back muscles in coordinated fashion counts as a core exercise.

April Tools: Core Strength Video


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.

April Focus: Quote of the Day

A positive or insightful quote to start the day can set the mind up for inquisitive thought and deep thinking. Having quotes placed around the community, on digital signage, displayed on the community channel or even written on a board can spark new conversations and recall meaningful past experiences. How one interprets a quote is very similar to how one would interpret art. Everyone has a different relationship with the words. Explore it and nurture friendships! 

April Tools: Quote of the Day

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. 

April Focus: We are All Photographers 

What you see in the world and what you find photo worthy belongs only to you. The view is yours to encounter and explore. Encourage residents to keep their eyes open for appealing and quirky photo opportunities, snapping pictures on their phones. Maybe it is nature; a flower about to bloom. Perhaps people that inspire; what type of person inspires you and what are they doing? Even simple, yet interesting images such as the way a stack of books looks sitting on a shelf, or light coming through a curtain. While conversing over coffee or happy hour, have residents share their newest collection of photos! 

April Tools: 10 Creative Outlets

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.

April Focus: Phone a Friend / Fostering and Building Community

Challenge residents to try it! Just pick up the phone and dial a friend or relative. Do it unexpectedly when it crosses you mind. Do not wait for another time. Knowing someone picked up the phone and paused in life just to call and tell you hello, to catch up, and to talk about nothing or everything is one of the easiest and cheapest ways to build connection and nurture your social network. Ask residents to think of two or three people they can call each week. Have them recap their conversations and how it made them feel. 

April Tools:  Trying New Things Video Protecting Brain Health