Lessons For The Little Ones
We’re sure that you have been receiving a lot of questions from your curious little ones and sometimes it can be difficult or overwhelming to find the right answers! Whether your children have overheard external conversations, or witnessed panicked shoppers buying toilet paper, the topic of COVID-19 is quite literally, unavoidable. Maybe they’d like to know why you’ve begun working from home? Here are a few tips to tackle this topic!
1. Break It Down!
First and foremost, find out what your little ones already know! If you understand what they already understand, you’ll have a better idea of where to start.
2. Validate Validate Validate;
Your children have most likely never been through a situation like this, it’s only natural for them to feel concerned. It’s important to listen to their concerns and to avoid dismissing them. They will be coming to you for reassurance, so while it’s important to listen, it’s also important to make them feel safe and heard.
3. Make This An Opportunity to Learn…
Teach the importance of hand washing and how to do it effectively! Show them how they can be more socially responsible, by sneezing or coughing into their elbows. You can discuss how the body fights off viruses, and inform them of the science of biology. There are a plethora of resources out there to answer all of their questions. We highly recommend ‘The Daily Podcast: A Kids’ Guide to Coronavirus’ - which answers all of the important stuff! Including ‘what colour is coronavirus?’ and ‘can my pet get coronavirus?’
4. Give Your Kids an Emotional Outlet;
Open communication is key! It’s a good idea to make this more than a ‘once off’ conversation, keep checking back in with regular family discussions. Maybe your child likes to keep a journal? Expressing emotions and fears is a healthy thing to do, and it provides the opportunity to have an open conversation about their feelings. Maybe they miss their friends or they are upset about missing out on that upcoming trip, while both are totally valid, if they explain their feelings to you, you can be there to comfort them.
5. Teach Them Kindness!
Remind your little ones that nobody should be bullied or ostracised for being associated with COVID-19. Show them the importance of community spirit and kindness, these are the stories worth sharing! Check in on your neighbour, put a teddy bear in your window or draw a chalk rainbow in your driveway to brighten your neighbourhoods day! Be sure to involve your kids in these community service acts.
Remember, this will all pass and we will remember the stories of community spirit and resilience