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We know that kids can pick up small changes in voice, tone and mood. They tend to be hypersensitive to the world around them. This September, they'll be returning to a school that still looks different from what they're used to. And this has the potential to cause some confusion. Parents will have to plan and prepare for the different rules and regulations in place too.
COVID is still affecting some aspects of life. And with that comes new, uncertain territories that no one has experienced before. It’s important to remember the impact this can have on us all, including our kids.
Get prepared with Health Assured’s tips for parents whose kids are returning to school in a COVID world this September.
Although lots of venues have cut back on COVID restrictions, some schools are keeping precautions in place. Unlike previous nationwide restrictions though, schools have all adopted different COVID-safe regulations. These restrictions can vary. Some schools will be keeping mask-wearing in corridors, one-way systems and scheduled break times. Whilst others may just advise more hand washing. Familiarise yourself with the kind of restrictions that may—or may not be—in place at your child’s school. This way you can relate to their school experiences. You can plan to buy masks or hand sanitiser if needed. You can also chat with them and prepare them for what they’ll be walking into in September.
Listen to their feelings
The change in routine can often bring up a range of emotions for little ones. Even more so now with the restrictions in place. If they do have any worries about the restrictions, try to ask open-ended questions. Let them know that it’s okay to be confused. If they feel accepted and understood, they’re more likely to open up again if they’re worried in the future.
Keep up a daily routine
Restrictions in schools are still fluctuating. So it’s good to try and keep the stability in your child’s life as much as you can. Keeping up a daily routine can be a great way to help keep them grounded when things are uncertain. Waking up and sleeping at the same time each night is a great way to do that. But we know how hard that can be—so don’t stress too much. Getting into an evening routine each night of dinner, bath and bed can sometimes help. But anything you can do to keep that familiarity in your little one’s life can help to calm their worries.
School bubbles, split break times and a lack of interaction could have affected your child’s relationship with friends at school. Encourage them to become more social with their friends where they can. Look at any after school activities that are available and ask them if it’s something they’d like to try out. Connecting with others will help their social skills. It might also boost their confidence in this new school environment.
Finding COVID difficult? Have a read of our blog: COVID-19: Supporting parental mental health
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