Resident Initiated Tools for Engagement Programming

Engagement Toolkit – May 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.

May Focus: Daily Patio Stretch

Routine, daily stretching is so much more than preserving or increasing flexibility. Spending five minutes a day to be still with your body and mind, feeling how the body and its systems are all interconnected and dependent on one another for optimal function does so much more than merely stretching muscles, tendons and joints. Encourage residents to create their own morning stretching routine in open air, with deep breathing while immersed in a natural environment.

May Tools: Stretch Routine 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.

May Focus: 5 Minute Fresh Air Challenge

Have you ever pondered why it feels so good to breath in fresh air? Can you recall a time you focused on breathing in fresh air, only to realize it just smelled different? Or why in the world you can take such deeper breaths when air is unlimited? The benefits of fresh air are literally life changing and totally free. Open a window or take stroll or grab a seat outside and see how it can completely change your mindset!

May Tools: Fresh Air Benefits

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.

May Focus: Stories for Community Socialization and Engagement

Are you looking for some new prompts to drive meaningful conversation, connect staff, start a meeting or even double as a writing prompt for daily journaling? Free Story Starters is a free, app-based offering activated by simply scanning the QR code below. These story prompts are sent to a phone via text message. They can be disseminated in a group or individual setting and will spark conversations beyond daily weather, politics, dining selections or current events. Give it a try and you will receive 6 weeks of prompts completely free!

May Tools: Free Story Starters

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.

May Focus: A Virtual Book Club

Book clubs are nothing new or novel but working in an eBook club is more readily available and popular than ever. Conversations over narrative stories and our interpretation of the context is an individual right that is never incorrect. These conversations stretch our understanding, make us contemplate other thoughts and ideas and ultimately teach us to be respectful and accepting. If you have not tried engaging residents virtually to participate in book clubs, throw out a new opportunity and see what happens. For those with vision problems, turn on that audio book and let it play! Check out to learn more.

May Tools:  Book Clubs