Regulations can cause trauma – check in with your child
In an environment where teachers are required to ‘think out of the box’ the team at Capulum College is open minded about directives – and extremely mindful of the manner in which particular children are affected by regulations.
Take the wearing of masks, for example. This is one of a number of rules that children have had to observe since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic. Despite what we have been told about their effectiveness as a public health measure, we know little about the short- or long-term psychological impact of mask wearing – especially on children. Eyes may be the windows to the soul, but a smile is contagious – and when last did they see a stranger’s smile? With their voices being absent in debate and research, what we know about children’s perceptions of wearing masks is limited.
Then there is the upset when overhearing reports on a person’s Covid-19 experience, the distressing stories of hospitalisation, as well as accounts on the death toll.
Because media exposure can be overwhelming and alarming, it should be limited. It is also suggested you create opportunities to ‘check in’ with your child – not a formal sit-down conversation but a casual chat while doing other things.
Children display trauma in various negative ways – some of which include:
- sleepiness/sleep difficulties.
Certain children may act silly or younger than their age, others may bed-wet, lack concentration, daydream, while several are known to complain of stomach pains and headaches.
To help disturbed children process their feelings we recommend – depending on the age of the child – asking her/him what she/he has heard and whether there are any questions. Provide accurate explanations and use child-friendly language. Avoid euphemisms, such as ‘grandma went away’ because this may be confusing. It is important that the parent, teacher, childminder remembers to:
- pause – to recognise the symptoms/what is being said,
- reflect – to analyse the situation and sort out feelings,
And to keep yourself positive the following is recommended:
- allow time for yourself,
- have time for others,
- allow others to express the way they feel,
- don’t let Covid-19 control you,
- keep a journal of how you feel – this will help you to think more purposefully,
- get physical – exercise is important.
“When trauma is identified in a learner, we at Capulum College will recommend the services of a counselling psychologist,” explains Jenni Underwood, founder of this niche remedial school.
– Now is the time to be a rainbow in someone else’s cloud –