The last few weeks have proved testing for a lot of us due to the second country-wide lockdown and the changes in school with Year 5 and 6 working from home. Here are a few top tips and resources for how you can support your child to comprehend and cope with the current world around them:
- Follow your child’s lead. Some children may want to spend time talking. But if your kids don’t seem interested or don’t ask a lot of questions, that’s OK.
- Speak calmly and reassuringly. Explain that most people who get sick feel like they have a cold or the flu. Children pick up on it when parents worry, so when you talk about coronavirus and the news, use a calm voice and try not to seem upset (even if you’re feeling it underneath!).
- Know when they need guidance. Be aware of how your children get news and information, especially those children who go online. Point them to age-appropriate content so they don’t end up finding news shows or outlets that scare them or have incorrect information.
- Give your child specific things to do to feel in control. Teach children that getting lots of sleep, washing their hands well and often, maintaining distancing and acting sensibly can help them stay strong and healthy. Be a good role model and let your kids see you washing your hands and socially distance often!
- Kids and teens often worry more about family and friends than themselves. For example, if children hear that older people are more likely to be seriously ill, they might worry about their grandparents or elderly relatives. Letting them call or video chat with older relatives can help them feel reassured about loved ones.
- Keep checking in with your child. Use talking about coronavirus as a way to help kids learn about their bodies and science but also focus on the other positive news out there, whether that be COVID related or completely separate. Finding the positives helps children to contextualise coronavirus.
Be sure to also take a look at the myriad of printable resources on the Pupil Wellbeing blog page for your child to use at home or complete with a parent or sibling to communicate how they’re feeling and manage any anxieties.
Take care and stay positive everyone!