A resource for parents, teachers, and others working with children
Children’s responses to stressful events are unique and varied. Some children may be irritable or clingy, and some may regress, demand extra attention, or have difficulty with self-care, sleeping, and eating. New and challenging behavior is a natural response, and adults can help by showing empathy, patience and by calmly setting limits when needed.
It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by everything you’re hearing about coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) right now. It’s also understandable if your children are feeling anxious too. Children might find it difficult to understand what they are seeing online or on TV – or hearing from other people – so they can be particularly vulnerable to feelings of anxiety, stress, and sadness. But having an open, supportive discussion with your children can help them understand, cope and even make a positive contribution to others.
Another critical factor is that children hear you talk to others and over the phone or a video chat. In the event of COVID-19, all schools, daycares, playgroups are closed or have gone online with the help of childcare management software, mostly indefinitely. Many parents are working from home. Children may be joyful to find their parents home with them. Especially for children whose both parents are working and who spend a considerable amount of time without their parents. It becomes very important that parents refrain from complaining about how their life is getting tough with children around all the time. Children are sensitive and they should not get the feeling that their presence is making their parents upset in any way. These are tough times, and it is perfectly ok to give priority to your family and children over your work.
1. Social distancing should not mean social isolation.
Children—especially young ones—need quality time with their caregivers and all the other important people in their lives. Social connectedness improves children’s chances of showing resilience to adversity. Creative approaches to staying connected are important (e.g., writing letters, online video chats). One of the best ways to stay connected is to enroll in a preschool program that is conducting online learning sessions – this will enable your child to interact with the teachers and peers on a regular basis with the help of a preschool app.
2. Be honest: explain the truth in a child-friendly way
Children have a right to correct information about what’s going on in the world, but adults also have a responsibility to keep them safe from distress. Use age-appropriate language, watch their reactions, and be sensitive to their level of anxiety.
If you can’t answer their questions, don’t guess. Use it as an opportunity to explore the answers together. Websites of international organizations like UNICEF and the World Health Organization are great sources of information. Explain that some information online isn’t accurate and that it’s best to trust the experts.
3.Keep children busy.
When children are bored, their levels of worry and disruptive behaviors may increase. Adults can provide options for safe activities (e.g., outside play, blocks, modeling clay, art, music, games) and involve children in brainstorming other creative ideas. One of the best ways to keep children busy is through the help of a daycare app where children can interact with their teachers, learn new lessons and do assignments. This will enable the children to be busy with the purpose of development. Children need ample time to engage in play and other joyful or learning experiences without worrying or talking about the pandemic.
4. Avoid language that might blame others and lead to stigma.
Remember that viruses can make anyone sick, regardless of a person’s race or ethnicity. Avoid making assumptions about who might have COVID-19.
Explain that coronavirus has nothing to do with what someone looks like, where they are from or what language they speak. If they have been called names or bullied at school, they should feel comfortable telling an adult they trust.
Remind your children that everyone deserves to be safe at school. Bullying is always wrong and we should each do our part to support each other and spread kindness.
6. Pay attention to what children see or hear on television, radio, or online.
Consider reducing the amount of screen time focused on COVID-19. Too much information on one topic can lead to anxiety.
7. Ensure the presence of a sensitive and responsive caregiver.
The primary factor in recovery from a traumatic event is the presence of a supportive, caring adult in a child’s life. Even when a parent is not available, children can benefit greatly from the care provided by other adults (e.g., foster parents, grandparents, relatives, friends) who can offer them consistently, sensitive care that helps protect them from a pandemic’s harmful effects. You can also consider employing a virtual childcare center’s services for your child with the help of a childcare app for parents.
8. Take care of yourself
You’ll be able to help your kids better if you’re coping, too. Children will pick up on their own response to the news, so it helps them to know you’re calm and in control.
If you’re feeling anxious or upset, take time for yourself and reach out to other family, friends, and trusted people in your community. Make some time to do things that help you relax and recuperate.
Free Resources to keep your child busy
Illumine recently introduced the concept of sharing lesson plans with parents at home. Since schools around the globe have shut down on account of coronavirus we have had requests from parents and teachers to develop a way for the teachers to share lesson plans. While this allows parents to engage their kids, the daycare software also allows the bond between the teachers and the kids to remain intact. Both parents and teachers are worried that when the schools resume the kids will have a tough time adjusting to the school’s environment again.