Try to show children how they are helping others by their actions. You are showing them how to protect their friends and family but also being kind to them by keeping in touch.
Messages for adolescent young people
Young people are often very tactile. Holding hands, giving each other piggy backs, lifting/picking each other up, hugging, kissing each other. Therefore getting into a routine of social distancing will be difficult for them. Some may have boyfriends/girlfriends and want to spend time with each other.
Young people will have been absorbing all of the information on the news and social media. We’d really encourage parents/carers and friends to reinforce the importance of social distancing. Explaining why it’s important in slowing the spread of the virus and reiterating the important role they play in following the social distancing guidance and steps being implemented to tackle Covid-19. It normally works best with teenagers to ask questions and help them think it through rather than just telling them what to do. It will be really important to listen carefully to their worries – it’s probably a very difficult time for them – studies / exams have been disrupted, as have their normal routines and friends are so important
Young people have lots of ways of communicating with their friends through social media and via mobile phones. Under no circumstances should they be allowed to socialise in person and meet up with their friends.
These restrictions won’t be in place for ever. Things will get back to normal and it’s important to reassure this.
Finally this is a worrying time and many young people may be feeling anxious about Covid-19. They may be worrying about friends and family getting ill as well as their own health. It is ok to feel upset or anxious, this is normal. Encourage young people to talk about how they are feeling. There are lots of online resources and Apps including virtual exercise classes.
Try and ensure everyone in the house gets plenty of sleep, continues to eat healthy and stays connected with friends/family via social media and telephone. If young people are regularly using social media talk to them about their social media use and make sure they are taking regular breaks.
The Sheffield Healthy Minds leaflet may help you
http://www.kooth.com – is a free online counselling service for young people aged11-18 years old if they are feeling anxious and worried
Have a look at http://www.epicfriends.co.uk
We hope this information is useful. We know these are difficult times and talking to your children about what they do not understand can really help.
Finally we think you are doing an amazing job. Some parents/carers are having to work and home school and for that we applaud you. Be kind to yourselves as parent/carers. Your children will not remember how good you were at algebra but they will remember how you listened and helped make them feel safe.
And just to make your day this is how our Social Eyes champion, Colin Muncie is keeping in touch and still fighting your corner. 💚 💚 💚