With everything going digital, your kids must have heard about COVID-19 by now. Children are sensitive to anything you portray as serious in front of them, therefore it is important the new ‘sickness’ should be known about through you.
To educate your child about COVID-19, here are some ways on how you can talk to your children without scaring them away.
It is likely that you children would want to go out and play in the field parks like they used to. Depending on the age they may even ask why school has been off during an odd time of the year. Prepare yourself for any such incoming. This is actually better, as you would have a chance to talk to them about it. However, if you have no clue whether your child has been perceiving the information about corona, so far, ask small age appropriate questions. For example, if you have older kids as them ‘Do you have any questions, confusions or concerns you may want to discuss’? if you have smaller kids you can tackle the issue in some manner like ‘so there is a sickness around, and it makes you feel very sick, bad and awful, so we have to clean our hands and stay home so that this sickness goes away’.
If your child asks you a tough question with a tough answer, answer it as politely as possible. Do not create lies until you are sure it will affect your child’s mental health severely. However, it also does not mean exposing them to harsh news and traumatizing them with rising death polls. Rather avoid any such scenarios where any such question springs up, if it does answer them truthfully.
If your Child asks Something
This is important especially for single parents. Please do not guilt trip yourself if you do have an answer to your child’s question. Make it normal for young children that it’s okay to not know about stuff at times. The best way you can address such a situation is, ‘I do not know about it, but let me look it up and I will get back to you real soon’. You can let them know about ‘Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website, so that if they are old enough they can clear their confusions through online means too.
Be Open to your Child’s Fear
If your child shows any sign of distress, do not panic. Stay cool, calm and collected. You will come across questions like ‘Am I infected too? ‘Can I be Next’?, ‘Can that happen to me too?’. At this point, smile a little and address it as down to their age as you can. For example, you can say ‘No, children don’t catch this sickness as easily as adults, but you have to keep your hands clean at all times’.
Allow you Child to Fell the Control
They are home bound; it is highly likely that they will feel all over the place at times. To help them calm their restlessness, a lot of them do small chores around the house or plan an hourly activity with them on daily bases. Let them do whatever they want to do in that little time. Do not interrupt them or scold them. make sure while doing this you are being a good role model for them.
Keep the Conversation Going
Keep it light hearted with children, however do make sure to prompt some queries out of them once in a while for them to feel relaxed inside. Create an environment where they are okay with the stressful feelings and can manage them in a healthy way.
It is important you should always be in touch with how your children are feeling about any situation. The best you can do for your little ones is to spend as much time as you can with them.