Ontario Tech helping parents talk to kids about COVID-19 as they get ready to go back to school

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Ontario Tech helping parents talk to kids about COVID-19 as they get ready to go back to school's Profile


Talking to kids about COVID-19 can be tough, but there is help available.

Ontario Tech is hosting an online Zoom discussion Tuesday night to help prepare parents for a tough conversation with their kids.

Dr. Lindsay Malloy, an Ontario Tech Researcher in the Faculty of Social Science and Humanities is helping organize the discussion.

She says one of the hot topics right now is back to school and even if parents are nervous you should see how the kids are first.

“As a parent you might be very nervous about it, but they may be actually quite excited and it’s okay if they’re okay with it, ” said Malloy. “Get a sense of how they’re feeling and try not to put your anxieties and your feelings about it on them. Ask ‘tell me how you’re feeling about starting school?’ Rather than, ‘are you nervous or are you scared?’ because [then] you’re sort of suggesting to them, ‘well, maybe I should be nervous, maybe I should be scared.’”

She also recommends walking them through a typical day to prepare them for the changes of this year.

“Talk about what it might look like. Talk about the changes, the things that will be similar to last year, the things that will be different this year,” said Malloy. “If you can, even do a dry run of what it’s going to look like, if they’re wearing masks [and] how drop off might go and things like that. There’s a lot of research showing that the more prepared and knowledgeable kids are the better they cope with potentially stressful experiences.”

Malloy will be joined Tuesday night by Valparaiso University psychology research colleague Dr. Amanda Zelechoski and Ontario Tech PhD candidate Lillian Rodriguez Steen.

To sign up for the webinar click here.

This is the second webinar in the series ‘Pandemic Parenting.’

You can view the entire first seminar, ‘To School or Not to School,’ click here.

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