It’s been nearly six months since the initial shutdowns or businesses and schools, but as we are winding down the year, children are slowly returning to the routine of things, adapting to the changing climate of the pandemic we live in. For many children who are starting childcare, they might be simply too young to fully understand the magnitude of COVID-19, and as a parent, you probably are finding it incredibly difficult to talk with them about it. So here are some easy facts that you can share with your children.
Define what COVID-19 is
Let your children know what COVID-19 is by telling them there is a germ out there that can make some people sick. You can inform them of the common symptoms–if they are old enough to understand–such as a cough and fever. You should also let them know that not everyone may develop those symptoms or any at all.
Explain how germs spread
If you have not already gone over the importance of how germs spread, now is a crucial time. Explain to them how germs enter your body. COVID-19 typically spreads to the respiratory system by touching the nose, eyes, and mouth. Some children might not fully understand what germs are, so let them know that they are so small that they cannot see it. The best way to prevent contact is by frequently washing your hands and practicing not touching your face. They should also be aware of social distancing, especially when someone has a cough or a sneeze.
Teach the importance of washing your hands
Taking practical steps will not only prevent the spread of COVID-19, but it will teach them important lessons to use later on in life. Encourage them to wash their hands frequently before meals. If they sneeze or cough, make sure they know to cover it properly, and then follow up by washing their hands.
You can demonstrate these fairly easily. An excellent way to ensure they wash their hands for the recommended 20 seconds is to sing the “Happy Birthday” song twice. Get creative and have some fun!
Talking to your children about COVID-19 can be stressful for you, but it can be even scarier for your children. The importance of keeping your children calm about COVID-19 is crucial. You don’t want to cause fear in them, rather keep them informed and encourage them to do their part in preventing the spread.