Murfreesboro-- "As fear and anxiety cripple our nation, parents should be aware of how it is impacting our children," encouraged Child Advocacy Center Community Education Coordinator Brittnie Noble. "Children are watching how we respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and it is important that we remain calm and reassure children they are safe."
Here are a Few Tips from the Child Advocacy Center on How to Communicate with Children During this Crisis.
1: Stay Calm
The Child Advocacy Center believes that it is ultimately the adult's responsibility to protect children. Parents and caregivers play an important role in keeping children safe and making them feel safe. Its important that we understand that children pick up cues from parents, friends, and family. They are watching how people around them are responding so make sure you are calm and reassuring.
2: Talk about it
The CDC recommends setting aside time to talk to children about the Coronavirus and always be available to listen to any questions they may have. The more unanswered questions they have the more anxious children can become.
3: Be Honest
It is ok to tell children the truth. We can give information to children with an age appropriate dialogue. Keep it simple and truthful.
4: Limit Media
As we are all aware, most media outlets are full of information regarding the Coronavirus. This includes, radio, television, and online media. Limiting television news and screen time might aid in protecting children from fear and anxiety.
5: Let Them Know What They Can Do
Let children know how they can keep themselves and others safe. Teach them proper handwashing habits and techniques. For example, using soap and water to wash their hands for 20 seconds after sneezing or coughing. One fun way to encourage proper handwashing is to sing a song while washing hands like "Row Row Row Your Boat," or "Happy Birthday."
For More Information on How to Talk to Children About the Coronavirus Check Out These Resources:
Coronavirus And Parenting: What You Need To Know Now
Coronavirus (COVID-19): How to Talk to Your Child
How to Talk to Children about the Coronavirus
Talking with Children about Coronavirus Disease 2019
Talking to Kids About the Coronavirus
The Child Advocacy Center works as a team with the Department of Children's Services, law enforcement, and the District Attorney's Office to respond to child abuse cases, aggressively prosecute offenders, and help children and families heal from the trauma.