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Helping Children Cope During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Dear ICCS family,

We are in unchartered territory, dealing with a global crises that is changing daily.  During these uncertain times, we will use this page to provide information and resources to help you and your children cope. We know you will continue to join us in prayer for those who are sick and for an end to this terrible pandemic. 

ICCS Administration

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From a counselor at one of our fellow Catholic Schools:

 

During this time, it is normal for you or your child to experience worried feelings, even if you have never experienced them before now. It can manifest in different ways (feeling restless, having trouble sleeping, difficulty concentrating, etc). If you or your child appears anxious or expresses worried feelings, please consider the resources we have provided below to help your family through this unprecedented time.

 

Limit media exposure and offer hope- It is important to be mindful that the constant stream of news can have a negative impact on how we all feel. While we all want to stay informed, it is important to limit the amount of exposure to TV, internet, radio, etc. Additionally, it can be easy to focus on all the uncertainty we are facing.  When watching the news, point out the good being done. Remind kids of the kindness being displayed and how people are coming together to help each other. As Mr. Rogers said, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.”

 

Provide reassurance- Reassure kids that they are safe and that you have a plan in place to keep them healthy.  Listen and acknowledge any worried or anxious feelings. Ask neutral open-ended questions and meet kids at their developmental level.

 

Keep connections- We all crave social connections. During this time of social distancing, it is important to keep connections with those we love. A great way to do this would be to schedule virtual time with grandparents, friends, and other loved ones. Additionally, schedule time for your family to come together and pray for those with the coronavirus, for our healthcare providers, etc.

 

Make a schedule and keep daily routines- Routines make kids feel secure. As much as possible, keep a schedule for learning time, bedtime, chores, dinner, etc. KhanAcademy.org is providing free daily schedules for students ages 4-18.  

 

Stay active- Exercise is a great way to increase endorphins. Going on walks, riding your bike, and other indoor activities are great for your mental health.  Go Noodle is offering free access for families right now and are providing great indoor movement activities such as Zumba kids and flow. 

 

Provide outlets for expressing emotions-  Remind children that if they feel worried, there are things they can do to help manage their feelings. For example, journaling, drawing, listening to music, reading, and keeping an open dialogue about how they are feeling.