Guidance from Lancashire Educational Psychology Team |
Talking to children about Coronavirus (Covid-19)
We realise that it can be very challenging to talk to children and young people about difficult events in the news. Psychologists are often asked about how much to tell children and how adults can prepare for challenging conversations on difficult topics. As a result, we have compiled a list of resources that might be useful for supporting children and young people, their families and school staff at this time. This includes information on how to explain to children and young people what coronavirus is and why schools are closing. There are also links to resources to support children's emotional wellbeing.
Although there are a number of resources available online, it is important that adults select resources carefully and explain to children what is happening in such a way that is appropriate for their age or stage of development. Children and young people with special educational needs may need resources to be adapted or simplified to support their understanding.
Animations and Stories
Brain Pop: a video for older children and young people
Carol Gray: My story about Pandemics and the Coronavirus
ELSA: Coronavirus Story for Children
ELSA Support Network: Elephant Handwashing to support our story on Coronavirus
ELSA Support: We are at home right now
ELSA Support: Someone I know has Coronavirus
Just For Kids: A comic exploring the new coronavirus
Story to explain coronavirus to children and young people from Mindheart
British Psychological Society (BPS): Talking to children about coronavirus
National Association of School Psychologists: Helping children cope with changes resulting from COVID-19 – a parent resource
British Psychological Society (BPS): Coronavirus and UK schools closures: Support and advice for schools and parents/carers
BBC: Coronavirus: Keep it simple, stick to facts - how parents should tell kids
BBC: Coronavirus: How families can cope with self-isolating together
BBC Newsround: Answering questions about coronavirus
Child Mind: Talking to Children
Early Years - Zero to Three: Tips for Families: Coronavirus
Hey Sigmund: How to talk to kids and teens about world trauma
Save the Children: How to talk to children about the Coronavirus
Supporting children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities
Mencap - Easy Read guide to Coronavirus
STARS – A range of visual resources designed to aid children and young people with autism, with their understanding of Coronavirus
The Autism Education – A social story, including specificity about the effects of social distancing e.g. not being able to go to favourite places
National Autistic Society – guidance and helpline for parents, young people and staff
Sensory integration education: Handwashing tips for people with sensory difficulties
Information for those struggling with OCD
Amaze - information pack for parents
Carers UK - Guidance for carers
Emotional wellbeing and mental health
BBC: How to protect your mental health
Young Minds: What to do if you're anxious about coronavirus
The Anna Freud Centre for Children and Families: Coronavirus guidance
The Anna Freud Centre for Children and Families: Self-Care and Coping Strategies
ELSA Support: Coronavirus 14 day self-isolation activities
Managing anxiety age by age: A guide about what to expect age by age around anxiety, strategies and tips on when to get help
PsychCentral: Coronavirus Anxiety: 4 Ways to Cope with Fear
UNICEF: How to talk to your child about coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-190: 8 tips to help comfort and protect children
Activities for families to do at home
3PPsychologies: 10 more activities for home
Cosmic Kids: Yoga and mindfulness for children ages 3+.
Have You Filled A Bucket Today? A Guide to Daily Happiness for Kids, Carol McCloud. Encourages positive behaviour and expressing kindness and appreciation.
The Way I Feel, Janan Cain. Explores feelings and a helpful way to talk about emotions with young children.
Something Bad Happened: A Kid’s Guide to Coping with events in the News Dawn Huebner. How to process different world events (ages 6-12).
What To Do When You’re Scared & Worried: A Guide for Kids, James Crist. A help guide to processing fears and worries (ages 9-13).
The Invisible String, Patrice Karst. Supporting children with separation anxiety, loss and grief.