A Kid’s Guide to Coronavirus via American Psychological Association (APA)

https://www.apa.org/pubs/magination/kids-guide-coronavirus-ebook.pdf

The APA posted this children’s book about COVID 19.

A Kid’s Guide to Coronavirus (PDF)

By

Rebecca Growe, MSW, LCSW and Julia Martin Burch, PhD illustrated by Viviana Garofoli

Magination Press • Washington, DC American Psychological Association

You probably already know a lot about different ways to be sick. You may know about colds, when you cough and sneeze a lot. You may know about strep throat, when it hurts to swallow, or ear infections, when your ear hurts inside.

What other ways to be sick do you know about?

Most sicknesses have been around for a long time. Scientists and doctors and all the grown-up helpers know just what to do to make people get better.

Can you think of some things that help people when they are sick?

This book is about a certain sickness. It’s called COVID-19, or coronavirus.

Have you heard of it?

Grown-ups have been talking about it a lot. You may have heard about it on TV or online.

What do you know about it already?

A lot of kids have questions about coronavirus. And without getting good answers, they might feel confused or even scared.

This book will help answer those questions!

This coronavirus is a new sickness. Grown-ups don’t know as much about it as they’d like. But here is what they do know:

Coronavirus is contagious. That means it can get people sick by moving from one person’s body to another person’s body when they touch or spend time close together. Coronavirus can move from you to someone else before you even start to feel sick.

Many people who get sick with coronavirus have a fever, a dry cough, and a little trouble breathing.

Anyone can get sick from coronavirus. It can cause big problems for older people or people who have other health issues.

Because coronavirus is such a new sickness, doctors and scientists are working really hard to learn how to help people get better and make coronavirus go away.

In fact, everyone can help out! You can do a lot to stop coronavirus from making people sick.

Can you think of any things you already do to make a difference?

You can wash your hands often with soap and water. Some people sing the ABCs while they do it—what about you?

You can also cover your coughs and sneezes with your elbow or a tissue and try not to touch your face a lot.

You can find fun ways to help, too.

Maybe you could paint a picture for your friend, or make a movie of your new dance moves to give Grandma a giggle.

You could write funny jokes on the sidewalk for your neighbors to see, or hang a sign in your window to brighten someone’s day.

Until scientists have found out how to make coronavirus go away for good, you and your family might have to make some other, bigger changes.

You might need to stay away from crowded places. This is because crowds make it easy for coronavirus to spread to more people and make them sick.

For the same reason, your parents might not work as much, or they might try to work from home. You might not be able to go to school or play with friends.

You might see people wear masks when they go outside. You might even get one of your own.

Super-heroes wear masks to protect their secret identities, right?

Now super-people everywhere are wearing masks to protect each other from coronavirus. Feel free to wear a cape, too!

These bigger changes can be hard.

What do you think some hard parts might be?

These bigger changes can be kind of nice.

What do you think some nice parts might be?

You should know that these bigger changes are temporary. That means they will not last forever.

Other things are staying exactly the same! Your grown-ups are still in charge of taking care of you. And it is still your job to be a kid, which means you still need to learn, play, and spend time with family.

What else is staying the same?

And if you ever have questions, or want to talk, your grown-ups are here to help you and to listen.

No sickness can ever change that!

The coronavirus pandemic can be frightening and confusing for children and adults alike. As a parent or caregiver, you have the challenging task of navigating and managing your own emotions and needs during the crisis while also supporting your child. The following tips offer information and concrete strategies that you can start using right away with your child and on your own.

Provide Just Enough Information

It is natural for children to be curious about

the new kind of illness they keep hearing adults discuss. Provide your young child with limited, age-appropriate facts about the virus. Focus on what they can do to keep themselves, their families, and their communities safe.

The information covered in this book is an appropriate example of how to talk with young children about the virus. Listen respectfully to their concerns and reassure them without being dismissive. Help them focus on what is in their control, such as social distancing and hand hygiene. Emphasize that it’s important they still do their “jobs” as a kid, including learning, playing, and spending time with family.

It is important to try to strike a balance between oversharing information, which may lead kids to worry about facets of the crisis they do not need to be concerned about, such as the economy, and under-sharing. Though parents sometimes withhold information from kids with the noble intention of wanting to spare them distress, too little information can send active

imaginations into overdrive, leading kids to concoct far scarier outcomes than what’s realistic.

Validate and Name Emotions

It is normal for children to have a range of emotions in response to the pandemic. Some children might feel anxious about the unknown and fearful about their safety. Others will feel sad or angry about canceled events like a vacation, or about losing their normal routine and time with teachers and friends. No matter the emotion, it is important to validate it, or in other words, to communicate to your child that their emotion makes sense and is okay for them to feel. For example, you might say, “It makes sense that you are feeling disappointed about missing your class field trip. You were really looking forward to it.” Or, “I can understand why you’re feeling worried. There are a lot of changes happening right now.” It is also helpful to specifically label the emotion your child is feeling; research demonstrates that naming an emotion decreases its intensity. In a difficult moment, taking the time to say, “I see that you are really sad” can be incredibly soothing to your child.

Parents sometimes try to make their children feel better by pointing out that the child has many privileges, and that other people are suffering more. For example, a parent might say, “Don’t feel sad about missing vacation! We’re lucky to have somewhere to live. Other kids aren’t that lucky.” Despite the good intentions, this is not a helpful approach, as it confuses children about why they are feeling what they are feeling. It can also lead them to feel ashamed for feeling sad about missing vacation. If you would like to teach your child to reflect on what they have to be grateful for, make a family practice of writing down “gratitudes” or discussing what you are each thankful for over dinner. By doing this when your child is calm rather than feeling sad or fearful, you teach them that their “gratitudes” are things to feel uncomplicated joy about, rather than guilt or confusion.

Focus on the Present Moment

Worried brains tend to focus on the future, predicting all of the scary things that might happen. Teach your child how to gently bring their mind back to the present moment by practicing mindfulness. Being mindful simply means that you are purposefully paying attention to the present moment without judging it as good or bad. Mindfulness can be practiced in countless kid-friendly ways. For example, you can play a mindful “I spy” in which you count all of the objects of a certain color in the space around you. You can mindfully eat, dance, walk, listen to music – the sky is the limit! Build times into the day to practice, such as in transition periods or at meals.

Create a New Routine

It can feel next to impossible to maintain a routine during the quarantine. Yet, flexibly following a consistent plan day-to-day provides much-needed stability for your young child. This is particularly important given that their world has changed dramatically in a short time. Routines do not have to be complicated. For example, it can be helpful to just structure the day around basic needs such as wake-up times and bedtimes, meals, and periods in which you get active. Constructing a routine around these building blocks of physical and mental health makes it more likely that they will occur consistently.

Consider giving your child age-appropriate tasks to help the family, such as setting the table, helping to prepare food, or cleaning up after a meal. Though teaching your child a new skill takes more effort and attention in the short term, it will make your life easier (and increase your child’s level of independence and sense of competence) in the long term.

Create Memories

Look for opportunities to create new, special family rituals. These do not have to be time consuming or involve preparation. For example, you can jump-start your days with a family dance party in which a different family member chooses a song each day and everyone dances around the breakfast table. You might also help your children brainstorm ways that they can give back to their community, such as writing cards for the elderly or creating supportive signs for health-care workers. When your children look back on this time, they will remember that, despite the many challenges, the time at home also allowed your family to create memories together.

Put the Oxygen Mask on Yourself First

Whenever you can, pause and take a moment or two to check in on yourself and your emotions.

Just like your child, you will reduce your own emotional intensity by noticing and labeling your feelings. During a crisis, this kind of self-attention can feel like the last thing a busy parent or caregiver has time for. However, by ensuring that you are attuned to and taking care of your own needs, you will have reserves available to help support your children during difficult moments. You will be grateful that you preemptively invested the time in yourself when you must draw on these reserves to help a struggling child.

Make a point to practice what you preach with your children. Focus on what is in your control, such as practicing and modeling coping skills, limiting news consumption, and creating your own new routines around sleep, nutrition, and exercise. Most important–validate and be gentle with yourself. It is impossible to perfectly fulfill all of the roles you are being asked to play in this moment in time. Get comfortable with being good enough. This may look like allowing your children more time on screens than you would normally, cooking (or just heating up!) very basic meals, or practicing a coping strategy for two minutes while hiding in the bathroom.

When to Seek Help

If your child is experiencing so much anxiety or sadness about COVID-19 that it causes significant distress or begins to impact their functioning (e.g., consistent trouble sleeping, eating, or engaging in typical life activities), you should consult with a licensed psychologist or other mental health professional. There is no need to wait until social distancing restrictions are lifted. During the current crisis, many mental health providers are offering therapy over virtual meeting platforms. The COVID-19 pandemic has created unprecedented challenges for children and adults alike. Yet within great challenges lie opportunities for growth, bravery, and resilience. You are taking a concrete, effective step forward simply by taking the time to read this book and reflect on how to help your child. Remind yourself of this whenever the “not good enough” monster strikes. You are doing the best you can, and that is enough.

Rebecca Growe, MSW, LCSW, is a clinical social worker with a private practice. She specializes in treating child and adolescent anxiety disorders, disruptive behavior, and traumatic stress. She lives in St. Louis, Missouri.

Visit http://www.growecounseling.com

Viviana Garofoli earned her degree in fine arts in 1995, and since then has dedicated her time to illustrating children’s books. She has illustrated over 20 children’s books and contributed to many editorial and textbook illustrations around the world. She lives in Buenos Aires.

@vivi_garofoli

Julia Martin Burch, PhD, is a staff psychologist at the McLean Anxiety Mastery Program at McLean Hospital in Boston. Dr. Martin Burch completed her training at Fairleigh Dickinson University and Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School. She works with children, teens, and parents and specializes in cognitive behavioral therapy

for anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and related disorders. Outside of her work at McLean, Dr. Martin Burch gives talks to clinicians, parent groups, and schools on working with anxious youth.

Magination Press is the children’s book imprint of the American Psychological Association. APA works to advance psychology as a science and profession and as a means of promoting health and human welfare. Magination Press books reach young readers and their parents and caregivers to make navigating life’s challenges a little easier. It’s the combined power of psychology and literature that makes a Magination Press book special.

Visit maginationpress.org @MaginationPress

Copyright © 2020 by Magination Press, an imprint of the American Psychological Association. Illustrations © 2020 by Viviana Garofoli. All rights reserved. Except as permitted under the United States Copyright Act of 1976, no part of this publication may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means, or stored in a database or retrieval system,

without the prior written permission of the publisher. Permission is granted to download and print or reproduce for personal, educational, and non-commercial use only.

Magination Press is a registered trademark of the American Psychological Association. Order books at maginationpress.org or call 1-800-374-2721.

Book design by Rachel Ross

eISBN: 978-1-4338-3415-8

Teach Your Kid Some Social Skills This Summer

Social Skills | 8 Ways to Help Your Child Learn Social Cues

As a parent, we have the responsibility to teach our kids how to interact with others effectively. Social skills are key to navigate through life and can be an incredible asset for future success. The link below has 101 social skill activities!

Weblink:

101 WAYS TO TEACH CHILDREN SOCIAL SKILLS A READY-TO-USE, REPRODUCIBLE ACTIVITY BOOK by Lawrence E. Shapiro, Ph.D.

PDF

101-Ways-to-Teach-Children-Social-Skills

FOOD FOR THOUGHT

The Real and Lasting Impacts of Social-Emotional Learning with At-Risk Students

By Jennifer Gunn

Finding a way to reach at-risk students who are struggling in various ways can be difficult, but social-emotional learning can open doors.  Copious research has shown that the impact of social-emotional learning (SEL) runs deep. SEL programs are shown to increase academic achievement and positive social interactions, and decrease negative outcomes later in life. SEL helps individuals develop competencies that last a lifetime.

The five components of social-emotional learning are:

  • self-awareness
  • self-management
  • social awareness
  • relationship skills
  • responsible decision-making

“When students are struggling and school performance is poor, they are more likely to find school and learning as a source of anxiety, manifesting in diminished self-efficacy, motivation, engagement, and connectedness with school,” says Dr. Christina Cipriano. Therefore, when it comes to our nation’s most at-risk students, receiving SEL training in the classroom can make a huge difference in preparing them for a healthy and successful life well beyond school.

Academic achievement

One of the most extensive studies of the long-term impacts of SEL was completed by researchers from the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL); Loyola University, the University of Illinois at Chicago, and the University of British Columbia. Their work reviewed over 213 studies on the impacts of SEL. According to CASEL, they found that students who were part of SEL programs showed 11 percentile-point gains in academic achievement over those who were not a part of such programs. Compared to students who did not participate in SEL programs, students participating in SEL programs also showed:

  • Improved classroom behavior
  • An increased ability to manage stress and depression
  • Better attitudes about themselves, others, and school

These student perceptions coupled with developed emotional intelligence lead to long-term academic success. SEL has the ability to give at-risk students the tools they need to overcome obstacles and plug into their education for long-term achievement.

Positive life outcomes

A 2015 study published in the American Journal of Public Health looked at students 13 to 19 years after they received social skills training through the Fast Track Project. Fast Track, which was run in four communities: Durham, Nashville, rural Pennsylvania, and Seattle, describes its work as “based on the hypothesis that improving child competencies, parenting effectiveness, school context, and school-home communications will, over time, improve psychopathology from early childhood through adulthood.”

The study also found that teaching social skills in kindergarten leads to students being less likely to live in public housing, receive public assistance, or to be involved in criminal activity. “At age 25, people who were assigned to the program are happier, have fewer psychiatric and substance abuse problems, are less likely to have risky sex, and are arrested less often for severe violence and drug-related crimes,” according to Child Trends.

Early interventions of SEL show outcomes far into adulthood, reducing the life risks for impoverished and at-risk students.

Reduced aggression

Researchers have also found that SEL reduces aggressive behaviors in the classroom, freeing teachers and students to focus more on learning. Research shows that students who receive SEL training are 42% less likely to be involved in physical aggression in schools. Mindfulness practices, a staple of SEL, were shown to reduce reactive stress responses in students. One study examined breathing techniques as a means to calm students with behavioral and emotional difficulties. The study revealed that mindfulness exercises can have a noticeable and positive impact on reducing reactive behavior and aggression.

Source

Research shows that children with a stronger social-emotional skill set were less likely to experience health problems, struggle with substance abuse, or engage in criminal activity as they got older. A gradient of childhood self-control predicts health, wealth, and public safety

Additional research further illustrates how early education programs promote social mobility within and across generations, helps prevent obesity, reduce health care expenditures and leads to overall higher-quality of life.

Source

 

Your Kids Aren’t Too Young to Talk About Race: Resource Roundup By Katrina Michie and NASP statement on Ending Racism

Obviously with the riots and unrest in the United States, parents should take the opportunity to speak with their kids about race. Here are some resources to start that conversation Right now.

Below is a statement from the National Association of School Psychologists on a call for action to end racism.NASP STATEMENT

Resource Roundup-

Written By Katrina Michie

Source from Pretty Good

So you’ve realized your kids aren’t too young to talk about race, so now what? We’ve rounded up some resources for you to start.

I found this short podcast put together by NPR and the Sesame Street Workshop to be a great one for a primer and understanding on how to talk to young children about race:

Talking Race With Young Children (Podcast Episode)

The Children’s Community School in Philidelphia did all the research and legwork on this information. We adapted it. Check out their amazing resource page here:

http://www.childrenscommunityschool.org/social-justice-resources/?fbclid=IwAR37PWDJSNV3HiG5Rp9sgezRAW80UtggMrCfntubK6euibscUgsw4607fAQ

More Articles and Tips for Parents and Caregivers:

Anti-Racism For Kids 101: Starting To Talk About Race

Here’s How W. Kamau Bell Talks About Race With His Kids

100 Race-Conscious things you can say to your child to advance racial justice

Article on Raising Race-Conscious Children

4 Things We Should All Teach Kids About Racism Right Now

Great Educational Podcast for Adults on the History of Race in America

Seeing White Series on Scene On Radio

For Teachers & Educators:

Teaching Tolerance: Race & Ethnicity

Books for Adults:

So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo

Books for Children

The Ultimate 2018 List of Diverse Books For Children (Here Wee Read is a great resource for books! Follow her Instagram!)

No White Saviors: Kids Books About Black Women in US History (Books For Littles)

Children’s Books By Brilliant Black Women: #OwnVoices Authors & Illustrators (Books for Littles)

A few more:

Whose Toes Are Those? by Jabari Asim

Let’s Talk About Race by Julius Lester

Lovely by Jess Hong

Sugarplum Ballerinas by Whoopi Goldberg

Toys:

People Colors Crayon Pack

Sugarfoot Rag Dolls

Pattycake Doll Company

A roundup of Studies and Articles cited in the Infographic above:

Three-month-olds, but not newborns, prefer own-race faces

Handbook of Race, Racism and the Developing Child

Developmental Psychopathology: Perspectives on Adjustment, Risk, and Disorder

The development of implicit intergroup cognition

How Kids Learn Prejudice

Even Babies Discriminate: A Natureshock ExcerptKatrina Michie

Strengthening Positive Parenting Practices During a Public Health Crisis (NASP Article)

Latino Dads Improve Parenting Skills By Reading To Their Kids : Shots - Health News : NPR

Strengthening Positive Parenting Practices During a Public Health Crisis
— Read on https://www.nasponline.org/resources-and-publications/resources-and-podcasts/covid-19-resource-center/special-education-resources/strengthening-positive-parenting-practices-during-a-public-health-crisis

Link to PDF: Here

Strengthening Positive Parenting Practices During a Public Health Crisis

PART 1: INTRODUCTION

During these times of stress and uncertainty, it can feel like our worlds have been turned upside down. This is not only true of service providers, students, and teachers, but also the families we serve. We know that increased stressors including job insecurity, housing insecurity, and generalized anxiety regarding health can impact the wellness of all members of the family system. Similarly, when one member of a family group is experiencing distress, this can cause shifts in the behavior, thinking, and relatedness of other members of the system (Bowen, 1966; Boyd-Franklin & Bry, 2012). With great levels of stress, risky parenting behaviors may come to the fore. Cumulatively, these risky parenting behaviors—even when they do not rise to the level of reportable abuse or neglect—remain a significant societal problem, and the likelihood for it to increase may be exacerbated by global crises and stressors.

In most cases, parents are able to maintain safe parenting practices, even during difficult times. A lot of parents are feeling overwhelmed and emotionally exhausted. In fact, many feel like they are not being the kind of parents they want to be or typically are. One of the first steps we can take in building partnerships is to validate and normalize parents’ reactions and experiences. Reminding parents that their feelings are normal reactions to a very abnormal situation can be invaluable. Alternatively, some parents are experiencing extraordinary distress, and they may make parenting choices that are less than optimal. In these situations, there may be a need to recognize and respond to suspicions of child maltreatment. The first step in responding to risky parenting practices is to work to enhance parenting capacity, to help families succeed and thrive. Understanding that parents and caregivers desire and want to be better parents is instrumental in helping them succeed (Prevent Child Abuse North Carolina, 2018). One of the most important roles of the school psychologist in supporting families is to mitigate risk factors and enhance protective factors. Such a framework can decrease the likelihood of abuse, maltreatment, and neglect and help families thrive.

Increasing Protective Factors

  1. Parental Resilience: Parenting is hard and all parents will encounter crises at some point, but parents who can weather the challenges and bounce back have safer, healthier children. School psychologists can promote parental resilience through promoting basic problem-solving skills, providing crisis support as needed, and helping parents access needed resources and community supports.
  2. Social Connections: Parenting is much easier if parents don’t do it all alone. Having a support network is important for a person’s social and emotional needs. Parents connected to community and friends are better able to meet children’s needs. Promoting virtual or phone contact between parents and support networks can ease parental distress, and can support and strengthen healthy parenting practices.
  3. Knowledge of Parenting and Child Development: Knowing what milestones are coming and how to effectively deal with them help prepare parents to care for their children. Knowledge of parenting and child development is like having directions to find your destination rather than hoping the signs you need will be clear and visible.
  4. Concrete Support in Times of Need: We all need a hand now and then. Parents who have dependable support and are not afraid to turn to others for help are less likely to be involved in abuse and neglect. Thus, supporting parents in reaching out to community supports can strengthen parental well-being and improve child-rearing practices.
  5. Social and Emotional Competence of Children: Many of the activities professionals do with children promote a child’s ability to interact positively with others and parents’ ability to nurture that development. Giving a child language to express his or her emotions, role modeling how to respond sensitively to a child, and promoting attachment and bonding between parents and children are all ways to help prevent child maltreatment (Prevent Child Abuse North Carolina, 2018).

PART 2: THE ROLE OF THE SCHOOL PSYCHOLOGIST

Begin with asking, “What can I do?” Many of us are feeling equally overwhelmed by the unexpected stressors brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. Reflect on how you have functioned in your role and consider how your skills can be best utilized given the limitations of remote learning. Developing your own professional action plan will help you address the mountain of need one pebble at a time, thus helping you be more effective in your work and at the same time reducing unnecessary stress and anxiety that can arise out of uncertainty.

Action Plan

  1. Reflect on the needs of your individual school and the children/families you serve.
  2. Consider your role and function as a school psychologist within the present societal context.
  3. Identify ways in which you can support families and children proactively.
  4. Identify ways in which you can support teachers or other school officials as they engage with their students.
  5. Create weekly benchmarks and regularly review whether you are making progress toward goals.

As schools operate through a remote learning format, school psychologists can support families in managing stressors through both prevention and intervention frameworks. Our unique skill set equips us to examine our schools from the perspective of individuals and communities and help identify and connect those in need with the support necessary to help families maintain their emotional health. Be a STAR during this challenging time, and use this parent training practice to support the families you are working with.

Teach Your Parents to Stop, Think, Act, and Reflect Parent Response/Feedback to the Activity
S Stop: (A) Have the parent identify when they are about to lose their temper with their kids. Coach the parent to take a brief break before responding to their children. (B) Ask the parent: What has been causing you to “lose your cool” recently in your interactions with your kid(s)? (A)

 

 

(B)

T Think: (A) Have the parent identify alternative manners to respond to challenging child behaviors. (B) Ask the parent: How can you respond differently to your child(ren) when they behave in ways you believe are inappropriate? (A)

 

(B)

A Act: Have the parent try out their new strategy. (A) How did things go when you tried your new strategy? (A)
R Reflect: Have the parent reflect on what went right and what can be improved when they tried out their new response to their children’s challenging behavior(s).(A) What can you do differently next time to more effectively parent your child(ren) when they are engaging in this challenging behavior(s)? (A)

PART 3: PRACTICAL ACTION STEPS

Parents want what is best for their children. Unfortunately, stress and stressors can get in the way and impede healthy parenting. The COVID-19 pandemic is resulting in huge stress for families. Direct and indirect fallout from the pandemic can sometimes result in parents interacting with their children in ways they may later regret. Here are some tips school psychologists can share with stressed out parents during these difficult times.

Assessing Parenting Stress Levels

How parents handle stress, including the fallout from COVID-19, can contribute to risky parenting behaviors. One way to help parents is to teach them self-monitoring of their distress. Parents can rate their stress level, through a simple thermometer metaphor. Teach parents to ask themselves: “On a scale of 1–10, how stressed out am I feeling at the moment?” Have the parent identify two or three simple coping skills they regularly use, which they could use quickly and easily to destress. This includes brief activities such as listening to music, playing a video game, or taking a walk in the backyard. Set up a system where parents complete this self-assessment a few times throughout the day. When stress levels are high, have parents use one of their identified coping skills. You can find a feelings thermometer and many useful cognitive–behavioral therapy (CBT) worksheets online here. Also, reputable CBT and psychoeducation worksheets that can be helpful when working with parents and families can be found here.

In addition to assessing current stress levels, there are other steps we can take to better understand and address the needs of the families school psychologists support. As we seek to support all families, it may become apparent that specific families need more direct care. Your parents may find websites on how to start an individual mindfulness practice or on parental mindfulness helpful. To better understand these specific contextual needs of our families, consider the following.

  1. Assess parent/family stress and resources: Conduct a brief needs assessment to identify primary areas of concern (food insecurity, housing insecurity, stress management, managing remote learning, family dynamics). A needs assessment is a systematic process to identify or determine family needs, and to identify barriers impeding access to needed resources. Identifying the discrepancy between the current condition and the desired one should be prioritized by you as the school psychologist, so that you can provide the tools and resources that can best mitigate the discrepancies between current and desired conditions.
  2. Safety Plan: Support the family in developing a safety plan. This plan should clearly describe challenges to safety of family members and steps that can be taken to manage threats to a parent or child’s safety. A safety plan is designed to mitigate threats to a family member’s safety using the least intrusive means possible. Here is an example of a safety plan.
  3. Check in: Identify school personnel or other individuals who can conduct regular meetings with the family to assess family temperature and continue to clarify strengths and needs. This could be school or community social workers, case workers, or a trusted professional or community member with the training and expertise to help strengthen families.

Promote Positive Communication

Good communication between parents and children is critical for developing a positive parent–child relationship and for subsequent development. If you notice coercive, concerning, or poor quality communication or parenting behaviors occurring in the family home, work with the parent(s) to emphasize basic parent training strategies. Basic parent training strategies you can share with parents you are working with include:

  1. Praise: Teach parents to praise their kids regularly for demonstrating a strong effort or doing something right. Remind the parents you are supporting that the more frequently they praise a behavior, the more likely it is their child will behave the same way again.
  2. Mindful Parenting: Promote the value of present moment engagement as it pertains to parent–child interactions. Emphasize to parents that providing their full attention to their children, to what is happening in the here-and-now, will help them better understand what their children are thinking and feeling, lessen disagreement, and strengthen the parent–child bond.
  3. Active Listening: Active listening is a useful tool to promote positive parenting practices. When school psychologists provide psychoeducation on active listening, parents learn how to listen, both verbally and nonverbally, to strengthen their relationships with their children and others. Providing psychoeducation to parents regarding how to reflect back the words, sentiments, or emotions expressed by the child can make active listening particularly effective in promoting communication.
  4. Child-Led Play or Special Time Together: Reinforce to parents the power of time spent together with their children. Regular (even short) periods of play with younger children or parent–child activities with older children and adolescents can strengthen communication and the overall parent–child relationship.
  5. Ignoring: Ignoring can help quickly end attention-seeking behaviors such as whining or tantrums. Ignoring is an active practice. This will require ongoing work and support with parents. However, teaching parents to ignore attention seeking behaviors can help end challenging behaviors by the child early, before they escalate and cause upheaval within the household. You as the school psychologist should work with the parent to teach them how to remove attention from the child and the negative behavior(s) they are exhibiting, to promote stress and relaxation within the household.

PART 4: INTENSIVE AND INDIVIDUALIZED INTERVENTION

Even with robust support and interventions in place, there is a possibility that a small portion of the populations we serve may need more intensive interventions. The number of families who are engaging in risky parenting behaviors and who are at risk for engaging in child maltreatment or abuse may increase during times of global crisis. Intensive, individualized interventions—either immediately or at a later date—may be necessary for some families. When appropriate, the school psychologist may be able to provide these services directly. Your role also may include consultation and referral of the family to more focused and specialized clinical and community-based supports. While there are a wide range of choices to consider in intensive interventions, a sample of evidence-based interventions that may have utility in supporting families in distress who may be engaging in risky parenting behaviors include the following.

Interventions Focused on Young Children Birth to Age 5

  1. Attachment and Biobehavioral Catch-up (ABC)
  2. Child–Parent Psychotherapy (CPP)
  3. Parent–Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT)
  4. Multidimensional Treatment Foster Care for Preschoolers (MTFC)
  5. The Incredible Years* (IY)
  6. Triple-P* (PPP)

*Modules and research also support these programs with older children (i.e., middle childhood and adolescence).

Interventions Focused on Middle Childhood and Adolescence

  1. Trauma-Focused Cognitive–Behavioral Therapy
  2. Alternatives for Families: A Cognitive–Behavioral Therapy
  3. Multisystemic Therapy – for Child Abuse and Neglect
  4. DBT Skills

PART 5: ENSURING CHILD AND FAMILY SAFETY

The COVID-19 pandemic is impacting families in unalterable ways. For many families, loss of employment, social isolation, and myriad other challenges brought forward through the pandemic are increasing family distress. These challenges will likely continue and possibly even worsen in the coming months. School psychologists will encounter family dynamics in new and profound manners through teletherapy. While most encounters will be adaptive, healthy, or even humorous, others may expose the school psychologist to the escalating stress and challenges experienced by many families. At times such unwitting encounters may even result in school psychologists who witness events, interactions, or behaviors that rise to the level of a reportable offense. Remember, as school psychologists we are all mandated reporters. Thus, we must be prepared to contact our statewide child protective services office should we observe anything in the home through teletherapy services that raises a reasonable suspicion of child maltreatment.

Parents and families generally want what is best for their children. When parents and caregivers are under duress, their ability to engage in healthy parenting practices may decline. It is important that we consider the robust and broad risk and protective factors that may impact child rearing and caregiving capabilities. During times of global health or related crises, such as COVID-19, school psychologists play a key role in strengthening families. With their breadth and depth of knowledge, school psychologists must strive to use their skills to promote healthy parenting behaviors.

RESOURCES: Help and Safety Contacts/Hotlines

References

Boyd-Franklin, N., & Bry, B. H. (2012). Reaching out in family therapy: Home-based, school, and community interventions. Guilford Press.

Bowen, M. (1966). The use of family theory in clinical practice. Comprehensive psychiatry, 7(5), 345–374.

Prevent Child Abuse, North Carolina. (2018). Recognizing and Responding to Suspicions of Child Maltreatment: A Training for Adults Working with Children and Families. (Retrieved from https://preventchildabusenc-lms.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/RR-full_2018.pdf)

Contributors: Kirby Wycoff, Michele Messer, and Aaron Gubi

Please cite as: National Association of School Psychologists. (2020). Strengthening positive parenting practices during a public health crisis [handout]. Author.

© 2020, National Association of School Psychologists, 4340 East West Highway, Suite 402, Bethesda, MD 20814, 301-657-0270, http://www.nasponline.org

Dr. Ross Greene’s Magical Problem Solving Approach For Unsolved Problems In Youth

Dr. Ross Greene’s sophisticated yet simple approach melds process and empathy to find solutions to unsolved problems. Start with a Walking Tour for Parents or Educators to get acquainted with the process.

Overview

It starts with an assessment called the ASSESSMENT OF LAGGING SKILLS & UNSOLVED PROBLEMS (ALSUP) to focus on what is to be discussed on a solution sheet to develop a Plan B. The Plan B process has a Cheat Sheet to follow in order to elicit effective solutions.

Plan B Steps

five finger

Ross Greene’s Five-Finger Strategy Word Document

Here are a FAQ and a link to the CPS website for additional information.

Resource Packet

Film

Documentary Film The Kids We Lose

Youtube Lectures by Dr. Ross Greene – Here

Two Minute Videos

Additional Languages

Many of these instruments have been translated into other languages:

 

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Danish
Netherlands flag
Dutch

Finnish
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French

Italian
German flag Austria Flag Lichtenstein Flag
German

Japanese
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Norwegian

Polish

Russian
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Spanish
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Swedish

Vietnamese

COVID-19 Resources for Parents of Children with Intellectual or Other Developmental Disabilities – From The STRYDD Center

Overview PDF

A Guide For Families with A Child with An Intellectual and/orDevelopmental Disability During the Covid-19 Pandemic
From The STRYDD Center–Supporting Trauma Recovery for Youth with Developmental Disabilities
Long Island Jewish Medical Center, Northwell Health System
April, 2020
To support your child who has special needs during this time:
1. Help your child understand the changes that are happening. Give your child opportunities to express concerns. Children’s understanding of the challenges we are all experiencing and the changes to their routine will vary depending on their age, developmental status, and special needs issues. Younger children may have worries based on concrete reasoning and beliefs. Young children have a tendency to be “egocentric” in the sense of overestimating the child’s own role in “causing” events. For example, a 6-year-old wondered whether her having had a non-coronavirus illness was why no one could go to her school. An older child may develop misunderstandings based on “all-or-nothing” thinking, such a boy’s belief that because of his (mild) asthma if infected with COVID-19 he would certainly die. Sometimes teens with cognitive delays pass misunderstandings back and forth within their peer group (even if they are only communicating remotely). At all ages, children may have some misunderstandings that need clarifying. We will provide resources available at various developmental levels to explain and reinforce understanding of current changes.
Some general principles:
 Give your child an opportunity to express feelings, ask questions, and voice concerns.
 Some children may not use words to express concerns, but their play or drawings may provide strong clues, such as when a child starts acting out stories about people being sick when the child had not been doing this previously. For some children, expression of concerns is less direct but will be shown in behavior changes (as discussed further below).
 In addressing concerns, choose a time and place that works for you and your child. If you can, address simple questions when your child brings them up, but it is ok to let the child know you will talk further later. For some children, having a regular time and place will help them develop awareness of thoughts and feelings that they may not think of otherwise. For these children, a visual calendar may help keep this routine as well as reduce anxieties about what comes next in the day or week. (See below re: routines.)
 Give accurate information, but at your child’s level of understanding. Use concrete language for young children, those with cognitive delays, and those with difficulty with abstract language. When possible, do this in a conversation that allows you to check what your child has understood and follow up over time.
 Be honest. It is ok to let your child know when you do not have answers (such as, when school will open). Share that you will let your child know when you find out.
 For some children, visual support such as a simple social story can be helpful. Also, consider using resources developed in a variety of mediums such as children’s books, simple videos developed to address specific issues and children’s toys to illustrate and to help your child understand. (We provide COVID-19 related stories in our resource materials.) For a child who demonstrates concerns in play, you may also be able to respond, at least initially, in that medium. For example, for the child who is acting out themes about people getting sick, depending on the situations to which the child was exposed, you might role play actions a family member or a doctor takes to help people who are sick get better. You could also read a book or share through words the actions people take. Use materials at your child’s level of understanding that also fit your child’s preferred communication style. For example, a young teen with significant cognitive delay was very proud of his reading skills. He loved reading books designed for much younger children that used pictures and words to address concerns. In contrast, a boy with a significant reading disability and language processing issues was not interested in looking at most of those books, declaring them to be “for babies,” but would talk about issues when they could be related to sports—an area in which he excelled.
 Limit your child’s exposure to media discussions and adult conversations about COVID-19. The information may be confusing to young children and those with cognitive delays—and too much exposure is likely to heighten anxiety. Try to check what your child heard and what the child understood. Clarify misperceptions and address concerns. Remember that “out of sight is not necessarily “out of earshot.” For example, a parent who was talking on the phone about the illness of a family friend thought she was having an “adult only” conversation since her
children were in a different room; she was startled when her daughter asked a little later how the friend was doing. There is more opportunity for this to happen during periods of COVID-19 “sheltering in place” with many parents and children at home when they would have been at work or school.
2. Consider the changes your child is experiencing. Changes may include losses such as limited contact with important people (for example, grandparents or significant providers), or lost opportunities for activities to which your child was looking forward. Try to help your child with strategies for compensating when this is possible—and remind your child that many of the changes are time-limited.
3. Maintain structure and routines.
 Try to maintain routines for your child. Build on old ones when practical, establish new ones when necessary. This helps establish some predictability in a changing world. For example, a mother reported that her family’s days were working better when she restructured “shelter in place” weekdays to follow the family’s school day morning routines about getting dressed, eating, and then going to a specific place set up for learning (but in her house rather than the school building). You know your own child and your child’s best balance between structure and flexibility. To the extent possible, try to honor this.
 In planning your family schedule, do take into account needs of all family members—including your own!
4. Support emotional expression and emotional coping skills. Acknowledge and accept your child’s feelings—for example, saying that you can understand that your child might be sad (about missing someone the child cannot see or something the child cannot do) or might be frightened by some part of the situation. The resource materials provide many suggestions for aiding emotional expression and coping. Tailor them to your child’s skills and preferences. For example, the mother
of a ten-year-old boy who has autism noticed that her son—although very verbal–could express feelings and talk about them more readily when he could draw simple illustrations (often with simple cartoon-like stick figures). He made a poster of strategies he knew, including ones developed with his school counselor, to help him calm down and then was able to discuss which ones would work best at home.
5. Remember that all behavior is communication. If you are seeing an increase in behavioral problems such as irritability, a return to less mature behaviors, disruption in sleep or eating patterns, or physical complaints that on checking do not seem to have a physical basis, consider the following:
 Is there something in the current situation that is confusing or frightening to your child? (Please see first section on talking with your child).
 Is the behavior, although seeming like a step backwards, actually a request for reassurance that can be ok (on a temporary basis) for this situation—such as a child who had been sleeping on her own seeking the reassurance of coming into her parents’ bed?
 How are you doing with providing some structure and routines for your child?
 How are you doing with self-care? Your needs are very important and should be balanced with those of your child. Most children will pick up on and react to a parent’s level of stress.
Manage your own anxiety – breathe, take a break, talk to someone, don’t expect too much of yourself or your child at this time.
6. Cope with the move—at least temporarily—to a virtual world for education and many resources.
 On-line access: We provide information about a resource for families with limited on-line access.
 Education: With many school systems moving at least temporarily to virtual learning, parents are reporting a range of experiences for their children who are supposed to receive educational accommodations or related services such as speech therapy or occupational therapy.
 If you have access to your providers, please work with them on expectations and guidance for services for your child. Discuss any special issues you may be having, such as dealing with your child’s understanding of or compliance with on-line learning.
 If you do not have access to your providers, we list and briefly describe some of the many sites that provide support for structured learning activities.
 Educational entitlement: As of April 2020, schools that are providing instruction are still required to provide accommodations for your child’s special needs, as specified on IEPs and 504 plans—although there is discussion of possible future “waivers” (at least temporary changes in some of the rules). We provide links regarding educational rights and issues.
 Other services you may be receiving: Your child may have been receiving Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) services, or your family may be entitled to other in-home services. Check with  your service providers about what they are able to offer, which can depend on a range of factors. Some in-home services are considered “essential services” that may be provided during social distancing, when providers are available. Some providers may be able to provide “virtual” (on-line) consultation during social distancing. Know your rights. (See information under educational access in the accompanying resource list).
7. Reinforce your child’s skill development—by everyday activities as well as formal learning.
8. Maintain socialization and social skills
 Encourage “play dates” or check-ins via video meeting software or other means, where possible.
 Use appropriate cautions concerning supervision of children’s interactions online including online gaming – there is a great deal of socializing going on right now. Children with disabilities can be teased, bullied, or manipulated – they may also obtain much needed social
support on such platforms. This might mean supervising or considering parental controls to monitor/control access to sites. See Parents’ Ultimate Guide to Parental Controls.
9. When needed, get information about how to deal with children’s health issues, including special health care needs in the current context: Many children with disabilities have special health care needs. Dealing with these needs can be challenging and may be more stressful during the pandemic. We provide resources to help address this issue.
10. Support your child with serious illness or death of a loved one: Your family may be experiencing the loss of people who have played an important role in your child’s life—such as a parent, grandparent, or extended family member, or teachers and other significant individuals. This can have a strong effect on children—including very young children and those with significant delays. We provide material on addressing your child’s response to separation, illness and loss.
11.Parent self-care: You are responding to your child with special needs in the context of your family’s other challenges. In addition to ongoing individual and family needs, many parents are coping with new work challenges (such as working at home, risks as an “essential worker,” or loss of work), financial uncertainties and hardships, and/or illness and loss of loved ones. Remember that taking care of yourself is critical for being able to also respond to your child’s needs. We provide
resources that address issues of self-care and balancing needs.

Resources

COVID-19 Resources for Parents of Children with Intellectual or Other Developmental Disabilities PDF

How to talk to your kids about COVID-19 – from NASP

Talking to Children About COVID-19 (Coronavirus): A Parent Resource

A new type of coronavirus, abbreviated COVID-19, is causing an outbreak of respiratory (lung) disease. It was first detected in China and has now been detected internationally. While the immediate health risk in the United States is low, it is important to plan for any possible outbreaks if the risk level increases in the future.

Concern over this new virus can make children and families anxious. While we don’t know where and to what extent the disease may spread here in the United States, we do know that it is contagious, that the severity of illness can vary from individual to individual, and that there are steps we can take to prevent the spread of infection. Acknowledging some level of concern, without panicking, is appropriate and can result in taking actions that reduce the risk of illness. Helping children cope with anxiety requires providing accurate prevention information and facts without causing undue alarm.

It is very important to remember that children look to adults for guidance on how to react to stressful events. If parents seem overly worried, children’s anxiety may rise. Parents should reassure children that health and school officials are working hard to ensure that people throughout the country stay healthy. However, children also need factual, age appropriate information about the potential seriousness of disease risk and concrete instruction about how to avoid infections and spread of disease. Teaching children positive preventive measures, talking with them about their fears, and giving them a sense of some control over their risk of infection can help reduce anxiety.

Specific Guidelines

Remain calm and reassuring.

  • Children will react to and follow your verbal and nonverbal reactions.
  • What you say and do about COVID-19, current prevention efforts, and related events can either increase or decrease your children’s anxiety.
  • If true, emphasize to your children that they and your family are fine.
  • Remind them that you and the adults at their school are there to keep them safe and healthy.
  • Let your children talk about their feelings and help reframe their concerns into the appropriate perspective.

Make yourself available.

  • Children may need extra attention from you and may want to talk about their concerns, fears, and questions.
  • It is important that they know they have someone who will listen to them; make time for them.
  • Tell them you love them and give them plenty of affection.

Avoid excessive blaming.

  • When tensions are high, sometimes we try to blame someone.
  • It is important to avoid stereotyping any one group of people as responsible for the virus.
  • Bullying or negative comments made toward others should be stopped and reported to the school.
  • Be aware of any comments that other adults are having around your family. You may have to explain what comments mean if they are different than the values that you have at home.

Monitor television viewing and social media.

  • Limit television viewing or access to information on the Internet and through social media. Try to avoid watching or listening to information that might be upsetting when your children are present.
  • Speak to your child about how many stories about COVID-19 on the Internet may be based on rumors and inaccurate information.
  • Talk to your child about factual information of this disease—this can help reduce anxiety.
  • Constantly watching updates on the status of COVID-19 can increase anxiety—avoid this.
  • Be aware that developmentally inappropriate information (i.e., information designed for adults) can cause anxiety or confusion, particularly in young
  • Engage your child in games or other interesting activities instead.

Maintain a normal routine to the extent possible.

  • Keep to a regular schedule, as this can be reassuring and promotes physical health.
  • Encourage your children to keep up with their schoolwork and extracurricular activities, but don’t push them if they seem overwhelmed.

Be honest and accurate.

  • In the absence of factual information, children often imagine situations far worse than reality.
  • Don’t ignore their concerns, but rather explain that at the present moment very few people in this country are sick with COVID-19.
  • Children can be told this disease is thought to be spread between people who are in close contact with one another—when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
  • It is also thought it can be spread when you touch an infected surface or object, which is why it is so important to protect yourself.
  • For additional factual information contact your school nurse, ask your doctor, or check the https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html website.

Know the symptoms of COVID-19.

  • The CDC believes these symptoms appear in a few days after being exposed to someone with the disease or as long as 14 days after exposure:
  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness for breath
  • For some people the symptoms are like having a cold; for others they are quite severe or even life threatening. In either case it is important to check with your child’s healthcare provider (or yours) and follow instructions about staying home or away from public spaces to prevent the spread of the virus.

Review and model basic hygiene and healthy lifestyle practices for protection.

  • Encourage your child to practice every day good hygiene—simple steps to prevent spread of illness:
    • Wash hands multiple times a day for at least 20 seconds (singing Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star slowly takes about 20 seconds).
    • Cover their mouths with a tissue when they sneeze or cough and throw away the tissue immediately, or sneeze or cough into the bend of their elbow. Do not share food or drinks.
    • Practice giving fist or elbow bumps instead of handshakes. Fewer germs are spread this way.
  • Giving children guidance on what they can do to prevent infection gives them a greater sense of control over disease spread and will help to reduce their anxiety.
  • Encourage your child to eat a balanced diet, get enough sleep, and exercise regularly; this will help them develop a strong immune system to fight off illness.

Discuss new rules or practices at school.

  • Many schools already enforce illness prevention habits, including frequent hand washing or use of alcohol-based hand cleansers.
  • Your school nurse or principal will send information home about any new rules or practices.
  • Be sure to discuss this with your child.
  • Contact your school nurse with any specific questions.

Communicate with your school.

  • Let your school know if your child is sick and keep them home. Your school may ask if your child has a fever or not. This information will help the school to know why your child was kept home. If your child is diagnosed with COVID-19, let the school know so they can communicate with and get guidance from local health authorities.
  • Talk to your school nurse, school psychologist, school counselor, or school social worker if your child is having difficulties as a result of anxiety or stress related to COVID-19. They can give guidance and support to your child at school.
  • Make sure to follow all instructions from your school. 

Take Time to Talk

You know your children best. Let their questions be your guide as to how much information to provide. However, don’t avoid giving them the information that health experts identify as critical to ensuring your children’s health. Be patient; children and youth do not always talk about their concerns readily. Watch for clues that they may want to talk, such as hovering around while you do the dishes or yard work. It is very typical for younger children to ask a few questions, return to playing, then come back to ask more questions.When sharing information, it is important make sure to provide facts without promoting a high level of stress, remind children that adults are working to address this concern, and give children actions they can take to protect themselves.

Information is rapidly changing about this new virus—to have the most correct information stay informed by accessing https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html.

Keep Explanations Age Appropriate

  • Early elementary school children need brief, simple information that should balance COVID-19 facts with appropriate reassurances that their schools and homes are safe and that adults are there to help keep them healthy and to take care of them if they do get sick. Give simple examples of the steps people take every day to stop germs and stay healthy, such as washing hands. Use language such as “adults are working hard to keep you safe.”
  • Upper elementary and early middle school children will be more vocal in asking questions about whether they truly are safe and what will happen if COVID-19 comes to their school or community. They may need assistance separating reality from rumor and fantasy. Discuss efforts of school and community leaders to prevent germs from spreading.
  • Upper middle school and high school students are able to discuss the issue in a more in-depth (adult-like) fashion and can be referred directly to appropriate sources of COVID-19 facts. Provide honest, accurate, and factual information about the current status of COVID-19. Having such knowledge can help them feel a sense of control.

Suggested Points to Emphasize When Talking to Children

  • Adults at home and school are taking care of your health and safety. If you have concerns, please talk to an adult you trust.
  • Not everyone will get the coronavirus (COVID-19) disease. School and health officials are being especially careful to make sure as few people as possible get sick.
  • It is important that all students treat each other with respect and not jump to conclusions about who may or may not have COVID-19.
  • There are things you can do to stay health and avoid spreading the disease:

o   Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

o   Stay home when you are sick.

o   Cover your cough or sneeze into your elbow or a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

o   Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.

o   Wash hands often with soap and water (20 seconds).

o   If you don’t have soap, use hand sanitizer (60–95% alcohol based).

o   Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

Additional Resources

Talking With Children: Tips for Caregivers, Parents, and Teachers During Infectious Disease Outbreaks, https://store.samhsa.gov/product/Talking-With-Children-Tips-for-Caregivers-Parents-and-Teachers-During-Infectious-Disease-Outbreaks/SMA14-4886

Coping With Stress During Infectious Disease Outbreaks, https://store.samhsa.gov/product/Coping-with-Stress-During-Infectious-Disease-Outbreaks/sma14-4885

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/transmission.html

Handwashing and Hand Sanitizer Use at Home, at Play, and Out and About, https://www.cdc.gov/handwashing/pdf/hand-sanitizer-factsheet.pdf

For more information related to schools and physical and mental health, visit www.nasponline.org and www.nasn.org.

© 2020, National Association of School Psychologists, 4340 East West Highway, Suite 402, Bethesda, MD 20814, 301-657-0270

Related COVID-19 Resources

Helping with Homework

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While recent research has pointed to the lack of evidence to support that homework has a positive influence on learning, many of us parents are still working to support homework time for our students. Here are some resources to support the process.

CH homework

Resources

Homework: A Concern for the Whole Family  Check out the handy checklist on page 24.

Homework: A Guide for Parents- NASP

Parent Tip Sheet -Elementary

Homework Tips for Parents (ADHD)

Top Ten Homework Tips for Parents of Children with Learning Disabilities  Super Duper

Parent and Student Tip Sheets and Homework Charts

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Mandated Reporting (California)

 

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I just took my mandated reporter training. In an effort to keep kids safe I am posting these links to promote child safety.

Links

The CA Child Abuse and Neglect Reporting Law: Issues and Answers for Mandatory Reporters

California Department of Social Services (CDSS)

Department of Justice Form SS 8572 –This is the link to the reporting form.

Child Abuse and Neglect Reporting Act (CANRA)

California Education Code 44807, 49000 and 49001

Mandated Reporter Course Sources PDF

Recognizing Child Abuse: What Parents Should Know– Good resource for parents.

RISK FACTORS

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STATISTICS

  • 4.1 million child maltreatment referral reports received.1
  • Child abuse reports involved 7.5 million children.1
  • 3.2 million children received prevention & post-response services.1
  • 142,301 children received foster care services.1
  • 74.9% of victims are neglected.
  • 18.3% of victims are physically abused.1
  • 8.6% of victims are sexually abused.1
  • 7.1% of victims are psychologically maltreated.1
  • Highest rate of child abuse in children under age one (25.3% per 1,000).1
  • Annual estimate: 1,720 children died from abuse and neglect in 2017.1,
  • Almost five children die every day from child abuse.1,2
  • Seventy-two (71.8%) percent of all child fatalities were younger than 3 years old.1
  • 80.1% of child fatalities involve at least one parent.1
  • Of the children who died, 75.4% suffered neglect.1
  • Of the children who died, 41.6% suffered physical abuseeither exclusively or in combination with another maltreatment type.
  • 49.6% of children who die from child abuse are under one year.1
  • Boys had a higher child fatality rate than girls (2.68 boys & 2.02 girls per 100,000)1
  • Almost 65,000 children are sexually abused.1
  • More than 90% of juvenile sexual abuse victims know their perpetrator.6
  • Estimated that between 50-60% of maltreatment fatalities are not recorded on death certificates.5
  • Child abuse crosses all socioeconomic and educational levels, religions, ethnic and cultural groups.1

Who abused and neglected children? 

  • 83.4% (More than four-fifths) of perpetrators were between the ages of 18 and 44 years.1
  • 54.1% (More than one-half) of perpetrators were women45.0 % of perpetrators were men, and .09 % were of unknown sex.1

CONSEQUENCES & RISK FACTORS

  • Abused children are 25% more likely to experience teen pregnancy.6
  • Abused teens are more likely to engage in sexual risk taking behaviors, putting them at greater risk for STDs.6
  • About 30% of abused and neglected children will later abuse their own children, continuing the horrible cycle of abuse.7
  • In at least one study, about 80% of 21 year olds that were abused as children met criteria for at least one psychological disorder.13
  • The financial cost of child abuse and neglect in the United States is estimated at $585 billion.8
  • Adverse Childhood Experiences 

References

  1. Child Maltreatment 2017. Published: January 2019. An office of the Administration for Children & Families, a division of U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. This report presents national data about child abuse and neglect known to child protective services agencies in the United States during federal fiscal year 2016. Retrieved from: https://www.acf.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/cb/cm2017.pdf
  2. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Administration on Children, Youth and Families, Children’s Bureau. (2013). Child Maltreatment 2012. Available from: http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/cb/research-data-technology/statistics-research/child-maltreatment
  3. United States Government Accountability Office, 2011. Child maltreatment: strengthening national data on child fatalities could aid in prevention (GAO-11-599). Retrieved from: http://www.gao.gov/new.items/d11599.pdf
  4. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Administration for Children and Families Administration on Children, Youth and Families Children’s Bureau. Child Abuse and Neglect Fatalities 2011: Statistics and Interventions. Retrieved from: http://www.childwelfare.gov/pubs/factsheets/fatality.pdf
  5. Snyder, Howard, N. (2000, July). Sexual assault of young children as reported to law enforcement: victim, incident, and offender characteristics. Retrieved from:  https://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/pdf/saycrle.pdf
  6. Long – Term Consequences of Child Abuse and Neglect. Child Welfare Information Gateway. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2013. Retrieved from: http://www.childwelfare.gov/pubs/factsheets/long_term_consequences.cfm
  7. Fang, X., et al. The economic burden of child maltreatment in the United States and implications for prevention. Child Abuse & Neglect (2012), doi:10.1016/j.chiabu.2011.10.006 Retrieved from: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0145213411003140
  8. Harlow, C. U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs. (1999).Prior abuse reported by inmates and probationers (NCJ 172879) Retrieved from: http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/pub/pdf/parip.pdf
  9. Swan, N. (1998). Exploring the role of child abuse on later drug abuse: Researchers face broad gaps in information. NIDA Notes, 13(2). Retrieved from the National Institute on Drug Abuse website: www.nida.nih.gov/NIDA_Notes/NNVol13N2/exploring.html
  10. Every Child Matters Education Fund. (2012). We can do better: Child abuse deaths in America (3rd ed.). Retrieved fromhttp://www.everychildmatters.org/storage/documents/pdf/reports/can_report_august2012_final.pdf
  11. Office on Child Abuse and Neglect, Children’s Bureau. Goldman, J., Salus, M. K., Wolcott, D., Kennedy, K. Y. (2003) A Coordinated Response to Child Abuse and Neglect: The Foundation for Practice, Chapter 5, Retrieved fromhttps://www.childwelfare.gov/pubs/usermanuals/foundation/
  12. Wilson, E., Dolan, M., Smith, K., Casanueva, C., & Ringeisen, H. (2012). NSCAW Child Well-Being Spotlight: Adolescents with a History of Maltreatment Have Unique Service Needs That May Affect Their Transition to Adulthood. OPRE Report #2012-49, Washington, DC: Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation, Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Retrieved fromhttp://www.acf.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/opre/youth_spotlight_v7.pdf
  13. Amy B. Silverman, Helen Z. Reinherz, Rose M. Giaconia, The long-term sequelae of child and adolescent abuse: A longitudinal community study, Child Abuse & Neglect, Volume 20, Issue 8, August 1996, Pages 709-723. Retrieved fromhttp://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0145213496000592
  14. U.S. National Library of Medicine. National Institutes of Health, Behavioral Consequences of Child Abuse. Retrieved from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3743691/

SOURCE

Bedwetting in School-Aged Children

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Bedwetting is an issue that comes up in elementary school from time to time. Here are some resources to help support this situation for your students. The good news is that for many children the problem will resolve itself over time, or can be fixed through fairly simple treatment.

Bedwetting (also called nocturnal enuresis) is very common. As the following graph shows, almost a third of four-year-olds wet the bed. By the time they are 6, only one in 10 children wet the bed, and one in 20 by age 10. Bedwetting can sometimes continue into adolescence.

Percentage of children who wet the bed at different ages

bed wetting graph

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Nighttime bedwetting. This type of bedwetting is a common sleep
a problem in children ages 6–12, occurring only during NREM sleep.
Primary enuresis (the child has never been persistently dry at night)
is associated with a family history of the problem, developmental lag,
or lower bladder capacity, and is unlikely to signal a serious
problem. Secondary enuresis (a recurrence of bedwetting after a year
or more of bladder control) is more likely to be associated with
emotional distress. Interventions include the use of reinforcement and
responsibility training (such as keeping a dry night chart), bladder
control training, conditioning (e.g., bedwetting alarms), and
sometimes medication. In the case of secondary enuresis, it might be
most helpful to determine any source of emotional stress and address
it directly. (For example, if a child starts wetting the bed at night
following parents’ separation or divorce, providing counseling to
address loss issues might help alleviate bedwetting.)

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When to see a doctor

You may wish to see a doctor about your child’s bedwetting if:

  • your child is at least six years old (treatment for bedwetting is not recommended before this age as treatment is less effective and many children get better on their own)
  • you or your child are troubled or frustrated by the bedwetting
  • you punish, or are concerned that you might punish, your child for wetting the bed
  • your child wets or has bowel movements in their pants during the daytime.

If your child has been dry at night for six months then begins to wet their bed again, it is important to see a doctor for evaluation.

The doctor will consider your child’s details and determine if there is a physical problem that needs to be addressed.

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BEDWETTING

Nocturnal enuresis is the medical term for bedwetting. Most children
wet the bed occasionally or even nightly during the potty-training
years. In fact, it is estimated that seven million children in the
United States wet their beds on a regular basis. Controlling bladder
function during sleep is usually the last stage of potty-training. In
others words, it is normal for children to wet the bed while sleeping
during that learning process. Bedwetting is typically not even
considered to be a problem until after age 7.

Bedwetting in children is often simply a result of immaturity. The age
at which children become able to control their bladders during sleep
is variable. Bladder control is a complex process that involves
coordinated action of the muscles, nerves, spinal cord and brain. In
this case, the problem will resolve in time. On the other hand, it may
be an indication of an underlying medical condition, such as
obstruction of the urinary tract. If bedwetting persists beyond the
age of 6 or 7, you should consult your pediatrician.

There are both primary and secondary forms of bedwetting. With primary
bedwetting, the child has never had nighttime control over urination.
The secondary form is less common and refers to bedwetting that occurs
after the child has been dry during sleep for 6 or more months.
Secondary bedwetting may be caused by psychological stress but may be
the result of an underlying medical condition such as constipation or
urinary tract obstruction. With secondary bedwetting, contact your
doctor for an evaluation.

Commonly prescribed behavioral methods for treating the problem include:

Establishing a regular bedtime routine that includes going to the bathroom
Waking your child during the night before he/she typically wets the
bed and taking him/her to the bathroom
Developing a reward system to encourage your child, such as stickers
for dry nights
Talking to your child about the advantages of potty-training, such as
not having to wear diapers and becoming a “big kid”
Limiting beverages in the evening – even those last minute water requests
Using a “bell-and-pad” which incorporates an alarm that goes off
whenever your child’s pajamas or bed become wet during an accident.
These systems teach your child to eventually wake up before the
bedwetting occurs

As a last resort, a doctor may prescribe medication for bedwetting,
either for short or long-term use. Some examples are imipramine (an
antidepressant), which relaxes the bladder, and desmopressin, a
man-made copy of a normal body chemical that controls urine production
at night. Although medication usually helps, bedwetting typically
resumes once the child stops taking the medicine. As with any drug, it
is important to monitor your child’s response to the medication.

Coping with Bedwetting:

There are products that parents can buy for school-aged children with enuresis:

Disposable absorbent underpants
Reusable absorbent underpants
Sleeping bag liners
Moisture alarms that go off when the child begins to wet the bed

There is no reason for punishment if your child wets the bed. Your
child cannot help it. Talk to your doctor about treatment options and
following these coping tips may help:

Be patient, understanding and attentive
Do not talk about the bedwetting in front of others
Talk to your child about how the bladder works
Avoid fluids in the hours before bed

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Links

Bed-wetting: Tips to Help Your Child