When the Coronavirus Came to
Stephanie Kraus, LMFT
Samantha Watson - Alvarado, LMFT
This is Coronavirus.
Some people call it COVID-19.
Copyright © 2020 Early Childhood Mental Health Program
All Rights Reserved. No part of this work covered by copyright Hereon maybe reproduced for or used in any form without the permission of the publisher.
It can make some people a little bit sick; and some people very sick.
A virus is a kind of germ that passes between people when we cough or sneeze.
The flu is a big germ.
The common cold is a small germ.
Kids and grown ups can get sick, often from many kinds of viruses. Some of those are big germs and some are small germs.
Not all coughs and colds are the Coronavirus.
Most of the time you will get a cold and then get better.
The Coronavirus is a new virus.
It has changed the way we do things every day.
We need to wear masks when we leave our homes, our special grown ups * may keep us at home more, our parks are closed, and we can't play with our friends or hug our teachers like we used to.
*Special Grown ups can be parents,
grandparents, extended family members,
foster parents, teachers, therapists or doctors.
All kids will go back to school. Some will go in person, most kids will learn from home.
This is called - 'Distance Learning'
Distance Learning means you see your teacher and friends through a screen. All schoolwork may feel like homework. Schools are doing this to protect kids and teachers from the Coronavirus.
You can't run and play with your friends through a screen.
This is so different!
There have been a lot of stay at home days.
There will be more.
This makes kids have all different kinds of feelings.
Which one do you feel today?
(angry, sad, frustrated,
scared, happy, lonely,
bored, tired, silly,
Some kids will get to see their friends and family, but it will look very different than before the Coronavirus.
People should wash their hands all the time (or use hand sanitizer), wear masks, and be careful how close they are to one another.
When the people in charge decide that the Coronavirus has become a smaller germ, we hope that we can do things like we used to.
What is something you miss doing?
Change is hard - even for grownups. It can help to talk about your feelings. Some kids like to draw, listen to music, play, dance, read, or take a nap.
What do you like to do to feel better?
Some kids like to talk to their special grown ups, some kids talk to their teachers - other kids talk to their therapist.
Kids need to be safe.
All the grown ups are working together to keep kids safe.
6) Recognize that change is hard for all of us. Identify your needs. How do you know when you are feeling stressed, angry, sad, or overwhelmed? What do you need in order to help yourself to help your child or the children you work with? How do you access these things?
7) Create a learning (or working) environment within the home. This may look like a corner of a room that has minimal distractions. You may need to limit
noise or other sensory inputs. Noise cancelling headphones or ear plugs, blue blocking glasses, or a weighted blanket can be useful.
8) Some people may need additional support. You can access free and confidential referral and information by calling The Early Childhood Mental Health Program (ECMHP) at the following:
Phone: 1 (510) 412 - 9200 Website: www.ecmhp.org
Strategies for Families, Teachers, & Service Providers
1) Asking your child or the children you work with how they feel and giving them opportunities to express it. Self-expression can occur in different ways. Some children talk while others do art, need to physically move their bodies, take breaths, or need a quiet space. For example, decorating/personalizing mask, reading a book, arts & crafts, or getting outside.
2) Break up daily tasks so they become more manageable and enjoyable.
3) Create a consistent and predictable schedule.
4) Take a screen break.
5) Engage in a mutually enjoyable experience. This can be with your child, your student, your colleague, your partner, or a friend.
EARLY CHILDHOOD MENTAL HEALTH PROGRAM (ECMHP) in Richmond, California has been providing infant/parent therapy through weekly home visits to troubled families since 1981, using a model first developed by Selma Fraiberg at the University of Michigan in the late '70's, modified to fit our demographic profile and local circumstances. The focus of treatment is the relationship between parents and their children. Therapists who visit the homes provide emotional support and developmental guidance to caregivers of young children.
We have since grown to offer a number of different services that support the relationship between a caregiver and the young child. Our guiding principle is that a parent who is listened to, respected, and supported; can do the same for the children in their care.
To foster healthy development in infants and young children who are at risk, abused, neglected, emotionally disturbed, or affected by family violence and substance abuse, by providing comprehensive mental health treatment and early education services to them and to their families.