Mental Health and Well-being
Click here to see content hand-picked to support your mental and emotional wellness through this time - no matter of age!
Educational Psychology Service support to Schools and Parents
Talking to Children about COVID-19
Resources for Schools, Parents, Children and Young People
We understand how difficult it can be trying to talk to children and young people about global crises. As psychologists we are often asked about how much to tell children, how and when to talk to them, and how we can feel prepared for challenging conversations. We have therefore started to compile a list of resources and helpful websites for you to use over the coming weeks.
Outlined below are a range of resources to support schools, parents, children and young people. Note this is not an exhaustive list.
BBC: How to protect your mental health
ChildMind: Talking to Children
CBBC: Video and Questions
Young Minds: Feeling Anxious about Coronavirus
Anxiety and world news from Hey Sigmund https://www.heysigmund.com/about/>
Talking about world trauma with kids https://www.heysigmund.com/how-to-talk-to-kids-and-teens-about-world-trauma/>
This is a great website for parents/carers containing the latest psychological news and research https://www.heysigmund.com/anxiety-in-children-after-world-trauma/
Supporting Students Experiencing Childhood Trauma: Tips for Parents and Educators from the National Association of School Psychologists
American Psychological Association: Information on Pandemics (a wide range of resources)
ELSA: Coronavirus Story for Children
Smiling Mind is a great mindfulness app/website for the whole family (Age 7+). Many children use Smiling Mind in class as a way to help calm and focus their brains and bodies https://www.smilingmind.com.au/
Cosmic Kids combines Yoga and mindfulness for kids ages 3+. This is a great resource and many children have experience of using it in UK classrooms https://www.youtube.com/user/CosmicKidsYoga
Something Bad Happened: A Kid’s Guide to Coping with events in the News. How to process different world events by Dawn Huebner (Ages 6-12).
What To Do When You’re Scared & Worried: A Guide for Kids. A help guide to processing fears and worries by James J Crist (Ages 9-13)
Have You Filled A Bucket Today? A Guide to Daily Happiness for Kids by Carol McCloud -Encourages positive behaviour and expressing kindness and appreciation
How are you Peeling: Foods with Moods Saxton Freymann & Joost Elffers Explores how emotions look through pictures of Foods. Despite the title it is a good way to talk about emotions with young kids.
The Way I Feel by Janan Cain Explores Feelings. A good way to talk about emotions with young children.
Some resources on bereavement include:
- The Day the Sea Went Out and Never Came Back by Margot Sunderland. A story for children who have lost someone they love (ages 4-12).
- Always and Forever by Durrant & Gliori (ages 3-5)
- The Baadger’s Parting Gift by Susan Varley
- Grandad’s Island by Benji Davies. A beautiful book that shows how those who are dear to us remain near to us – however far away they may seem
About Death for Teenagers: How to cope with losing someone you love by Earl Grollman
Dying, Death and Grief: Working with adult bereavement by Brenda Mallon
Useful websites and organisations:
- Winston’s Wish is a useful website which has practical activity suggestions which could be used in schools. You may also wish to make use of general activities about feelings and relationships if working with a bereaved child.
- If the child has particular additional support needs you may wish to seek advice from national organisations such as the Scottish Down’s Syndrome Association, or NAS in the case of a child with an autism spectrum disorder.
- You may also wish to access the Childhood Bereavement Network. Sometimes children need more support to cope with death/loss/change. Once this has been assessed to be the case ‘Seasons for Growth’ and ‘Give us a Break’ are examples of group programmes which schools may run, they require trained staff. Family or individual counselling maybe appropriate.
Further support for School, Parents & Carers
A sample letter an overseas Educational Psychologist shared with me. Good to draw from which gives parents strategies to build resilience and have reassuring conversations with their children. You can use or modify this document to fit your school's needs: Sample letter to parents can be accessed at https://iscainfo.com/resources/ISCA%20Coronavirus%20Suggestions%20to%20Parents%20(1).pdf
For schools - teaching and learning: This valuable resource from International School Services (ISS) is a "snapshot of the recent work of many schools and individuals in regards to policy, technical operations, teaching and learning and community and wellness": Online Learning: a Strategic Approach for K-12 Schools https://www.iss.edu/community/online-learning?utm_campaign=FY20-Extended%20School%20Closure&utm_source=hs_email&utm_medium=email&utm_content=83673074&_hsenc=p2ANqtz-9UVt0QHdFKUs-BbDiQR8hrncu5vI0kil0XvPyg1yksUK4Eb4B4b-i5WMwZHQNxLrY_ZOvjKYmXoaP-cgBz7ucdFlIx6w&_hsmi=83673074
For schools - Weekly Wellbeing Check In from MHFA England