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5-minute Read to Help Parents during the Covid-19 Pandemic

The following advice from the World Health Organisation is an easy but helpful read for Parents or Carers of Children.

One-on-one time

  1. Set at least 20 minutes aside per day to spend with each child. Sticking to a specific time per day will give you both something to look forward to.
  2. Ask your child what they want to do. Autonomy in deciding what to do during the day will build their self-confidence.  Obviously, restrictions will have to be applied during the lockdown.
  3. Switch off the T.V. and have virus-free time. Fill this time with activities that your child will enjoy.

Keep it positive

  1. Use positive language as opposed to negative when instructing your child. For instance, ‘Please tidy your bedroom’ instead of ‘You always leave a mess- tidy it!’.
  2. Praise your child when they behave well. Evidence shows that your child will then be more likely to repeat that behaviour pattern.
  3. Be realistic. Can your child abide by all the rules you set? Your child may not be able to ‘stay quiet’ for the majority of the day whilst you work from home.  Set rules that are reasonable and achievable.

Structure up

  1. Create a schedule for you and your child that has time for structured activities and free time. This can help children feel more secure and thus equating to better behaviour.
  2. Make handwashing and personal hygiene fun. Maybe create your own song that lasts 20 seconds whilst washing your hands.
  3. Keep your children active. This has many benefits..!
  4. Teach your children the importance of social distancing.
  5. Remember you are a model for your child’s behaviour.

Talk about Covid-19

  1. Be open, honest and supportive.
  2. Focus conversation on positive narratives surrounding the pandemic like the healthcare professionals who are heroically acting to defend us all.
  3. Explain that covid-19 has nothing to do with how somebody looks, where they’re from or what language they speak. Tell your children that we can be compassionate about those who are sick and for those caring for them.

By DC Hadley-James Brown

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