The pandemic has been difficult for everyone, including young children, whose routines have been greatly disrupted and new rules and regulations set in place. Here, we’ve collected some ideas to help your kids cope with Covid-19 regulations.
Stay calm and be upfront
Pretending the pandemic isn’t happening won’t help ease your child’s fears. Instead, it’s important to stay calm and be as direct as possible.
- Explain the virus to your kids, how it spreads, and why new regulations can help them protect themselves, their friends, and their family. It’s important for them to know that regulations can change as more is known about the virus, and to be prepared to adapt.
- Encourage new hygiene habits, such as regular hand-washing or hand sanitizer use, coughing or sneezing into elbows, and sanitizing surfaces regularly (age permitting).
- Limit exposure to news, but don’t cut it out all together. You may also want to consider reducing social media time to help prevent exposure to misinformation.
- Be ready to answer questions and listen to your kid’s concerns if and when they happen.
Stick to a routine
It’s important for kids and adults alike to have an established routine during the pandemic. Whether it’s going to the park after school, having breaks at a certain time with your kid’s favorite treats, or setting up a block of free time for them to watch their favorite shows, chat with friends, or play games, it’s important to stick to a routine during the weekdays to help maintain a sense of normalcy during these difficult times.
It’s also a good idea to practice healthy habits as much as possible. Going to the park, participating in sports, eating healthy foods, and getting enough sleep can all reduce stress and boost moods and morale.
Help your kids cope with Covid-19 by establishing a reward system
One of the best ways to help kids cope with Covid-19 is by establishing a reward system. Everyone’s reward system will look different, as all children will respond differently. Talk with your kids to figure out what they might like to see as part of their reward system. This might include rewards for:
- Completing homework
- Getting a certain grade on a test or project
- Cleaning their room
- Taking care of a pet
Try to provide opportunities for your children to socialize
It’s important for young kids to get plenty of socialization in, as this will help their morale and social development during the pandemic. Remote socialization cannot replace in-person interactions, but it can still help to coordinate with other parents to schedule video calls and virtual game sessions.
If it’s possible to create a safe list ‘bubble’ of peers that have been vaccinated, you can get your kids back out on the playground with their friends. To keep your family as safe as possible, you can get Covid-19 tests at home for fast answers and peace of mind.
Support your kids in the online classroom
Teaching doesn’t come naturally to many parents, which is perfectly normal. You can always seek outside help from tutors to answer questions your child has about their schoolwork. There’s also a lot you can do to support your kids in online school.
- Help them with their homework just like you would normally
- Provide them with a quiet, comfortable place where they can attend classes
- Listen to their questions and concerns about online school
- Provide snacks for breaks and during homework
- Help schedule in breaks between classes and homework so that their day is balanced
- Establish clear expectations to help guide your children through the school year
- Stay positive!
Seek outside help if your child is falling behind in school
The pandemic has been especially difficult for children with learning disabilities, as remote education cannot provide the resources they need in order to succeed. These children are at high risk of falling behind academically, which can impact their overall education. They may also risk going undiagnosed if they do have a learning disability.
Tutoring – whether private or at a tutoring center – can help children succeed in school by reinforcing foundational skills and addressing educational deficits. However, it’s possible that your child may have a learning disability that cannot be remedied by tutoring alone.
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If you think your child may have a learning disability, it’s important to get a diagnosis from a professional. School IEP programs are often reluctant to or do not have the resources to make diagnoses. This can cause years of frustration for both the child and the parents.
Our friends at Neuro-Psych Doctor can help. They provide comprehensive, kid-friendly neuropsychological evaluations for children of all ages to help determine if a learning disability is present. They will also determine the causes of the issue and best treatments to help your child succeed. You can learn more about their services at the link below.