Parenting and Caregiving Resources
- Family Support from Kim John Payne on Simplicity Parenting
- In Difficult Times: How Do I Find and Create Goodness for My Children?
- Building Resiliency in Families During the COVID-19 Pandemic
- 5 Ways to Help Teens Manage Anxiety About the Coronavirus
- Making Art Reduces Cortisol
- Our Brains Need Craft More Than Ever
- How to Talk to Children about Difficult News by the American Psychological Association
- Explaining the News to Our Kids by Common Sense Media
- How to Talk to Kids About the Coronavirus Outbreak by TIME
- How to Talk to Kids About Coronavirus by the New York Times
- Talking to Children about COVID-19 by the Waldorf School of Philadelphia
- Practical Tips for Caregivers
- Grandparenting in the time of COVID-19
Lower School Level
Videos relating to Coronavirus
Coronavirus Social Story https://drive.google.com/file/d/1eqIgqUrON8Ezk3PkLKWs6ukyJOIyoelS/view
School closure wellness challenge https://docs.google.com/document/d/1C1ctZ-LoiaFsvcjjmdgWODt8h1V37I389sSxE1VjVRw/edit
Yoga, mindfulness & relaxation, ages 3+ https://www.youtube.com/user/CosmicKidsYoga
Muscle relaxation https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cDKyRpW-Yuc
Stress and Anxiety
State of CA resources: https://covid19.ca.gov/resources-for-emotional-support-and-well-being/#top
Stress management during the Covid-19 https://www.verywellmind.com/coping-with-coronavirus-covid-19-4800265
Covid-19 – tips for managing anxiety and stress https://adaa.org/finding-help/coronavirus-anxiety-helpful-resources
Resource & Info Guide https://www.nami.org/covid-19-guide
10 hobbies that combat stress https://paradigmmalibu.com/10-hobbies-combat-stress/
National Alliance on Mental Illness (excellent general info) https://www.nami.org/Your-Journey/Teens-Young-Adults
The Trevor Project (LGBTQ resources) https://www.thetrevorproject.org/
TeensHealth (many general topics) https://kidshealth.org/en/teens/?WT.ac=p2t#catdieting
Down Dog (Free Yoga) https://www.downdogapp.com/
Fitness Blender (Free videos) https://www.fitnessblender.com/videos?exclusive%5B%5D=0
Les Mills (fitness & dance videos) https://watch.lesmillsondemand.com/free-content
YMCA On Demand (workouts) https://ymca360.org/on-demand#/
Mindfulness for Teens http://mindfulnessforteens.com/guided-meditations/
Smiling Mind https://www.smilingmind.com.au/smiling-mind-app
Virtual tours (zoos, museums, etc)
More virtual tours (wide variety) https://www.refinery29.com/en-us/2020/03/9576127/free-virtual-tours-online
Free Audible stories https://stories.audible.com/start-listen
TED TALKS https://www.ted.com/talks
Daylio Journal App (More for teens with phones – records moods, activities, etc.)
Teens – looking into the future
Virtual college campus tours (adolescents & teens)
Gap year sites (teens)
If you or someone you know is in danger of harm to self or others, please call 911, text HOME the 741741 crisis line, or contact the Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. We are here for you, so please reach out if you need help. Janis Walters, HS Counselor can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org as an additional school resource.
Below was adapted (for teens) from a PsyD in NYS, School & Clinical Psychology (no name listed), 3/2020
MENTAL HEALTH WELLNESS TIPS & IDEAS FOR QUARANTINE
- Stick to a routine. Go to sleep and wake up at a reasonable time, write a schedule that is varied and includes time for homework as well as self-care.
- Dress for the social life you want, not the social life you have. Get showered and dress in comfortable clothes, wash your face, brush your teeth. Take the time to do a bath or a facial. Try wearing some bright colors. How we dress can impact our mood.
- Go outside east once a day, for at least thirty minutes (if possible). If you are concerned about contact, try first thing in the morning, or a time that works for your family. If you are high risk or living with those who are high risk, open the windows and turn on the fan. It is amazing what fresh air can do for spirits.
- Find some time to move each day, again daily for at least thirty minutes. If you don’t feel comfortable going outside, there are many YouTube videos that offer free movement classes, and if all else fails, turn on the music and dance. (See links above for ideas)
- Reach out to others, you guessed it, at least once daily for thirty minutes. Try to do FaceTime, Skype, phone calls, texting—connect with other people to seek and provide support, or just to chat about the day. Be with your pets…they help keep some peace no matter what’s going on.
- Stay hydrated and eat well. This one may seem obvious, but stress and eating often don’t mix well, and we find ourselves over-indulging, forgetting to eat, or avoiding food. Drink plenty of water, eat some good and nutritious foods, and challenge yourself to learn how to cook something new! (or help your adults prep/cook)
- Develop a self-care toolkit. This can look different for everyone. A lot of successful self-care strategies involve a sensory component (seven senses: touch, taste, sight, hearing, smell, vestibular (movement) and proprioceptive (comforting pressure). An idea for each: a soft blanket or stuffed animal, a hot chocolate, photos of vacations, comforting music, lavender or eucalyptus oil, a small swing or rocking chair, a weighted blanket. A journal, an inspirational book, or a mandala coloring book is wonderful, bubbles to blow or blowing watercolor on paper through a straw are visually appealing as well as work on controlled breath. Mint gum, Listerine strips, ginger ale, frozen Starburst, ice packs, and cold are also good for anxiety regulation. (depending on age)
- Give yourself and others the benefit of the doubt, and a wide berth. A lot of cooped up time can bring out the worst in everyone. Each person will have moments when they will not be at their best. It is important to move with grace through blowups, to not show up to every argument you are invited to, and to not hold grudges and continue disagreements. Let’s try to believe we are all doing our best, but our best can change.
- Everyone should find their own retreat space. Space is at a premium, particularly with city living. It is important that people think through their own separate space for homework and for relaxation. You can make this place cozy by using blankets, pillows, cushions, scarves, beanbags, and tents. It is good to know that even when we are in close quarters, we have our own special place to go to be alone.
- Some may have increased anxiety, worries and fears, nightmares, difficulty sleeping, testing limits, and meltdowns. Be easy on yourself; this will pass.
- Have expectations and practice radical self-acceptance. This idea is connected with #12. We are doing too many things in this moment, under fear and stress. This does not make a formula for excellence. Instead, give yourself what psychologists call “radical self-acceptance”: accepting everything about yourself, your current situation, and your life without question, blame, or pushback. You cannot fail at this—there is no road map, no precedent for this, and we are all doing the best we can in a situation that might seem impossible.
- Limit social media and COVID conversation, especially around kids, and to just give yourself a breather. One can find tons of information on COVID-19 to consume, and it changes minute to minute. The information is sometimes sensationalized, negatively skewed, and alarmist. Find a few trusted sources that you can check in with consistently, limit it to once a day and set a time limit for yourself on how much you consume. (Ex: 30 minutes tops, 1-2 X daily)
- Notice the good in the world, the helpers. There is a lot of scary, negative, and overwhelming information to take in regarding this pandemic. There are also a ton of stories of people sacrificing, donating, and supporting one another in miraculous ways. It is important to counterbalance the heavy information with the hopeful information.
- Help others. Find ways, big and small, to give back to others. Support restaurants, check in with elderly neighbors, and help your family. Regardless of age, we can all help in big and small ways.
- Find something you can control, and control the heck out of it. In moments of big uncertainty and overwhelm, control your little corner of the world. Organize your bookshelf, purge your closet, put together that furniture, tackle the little projects you have been putting off. These activities help to anchor and ground us when the bigger things are chaotic.
- Find a long-term project to dive into. Now is the time to learn how to play the keyboard, put together a huge jigsaw puzzle, paint a picture, read a book series, binge watch a show, crochet a blanket, or solve a Rubix cube. Find something that will keep you busy, distracted, and engaged to take breaks from what is going on in the outside world…but stay on top of your homework 🙂
- Engage in repetitive movements and left-right movements. Research has shown that repetitive movement (knitting, coloring, painting, clay sculpting, jumping rope, etc) especially left-right movement (running, drumming, skating, hopping) can be effective at self-soothing and maintaining self-regulation in moments of distress.
- Find an expressive art and go for it. Our emotional brain is very receptive to the creative arts, and it is a direct portal for release of feeling. Find something that is creative (sculpting, drawing, dancing, music, singing, playing) and give it your all.
- 19 Find lightness and humor in each day. Counterbalance this heaviness with something funny each day: cat videos on YouTube, charades, a funny movie—we all need a little comedic relief in our day, every day.
- Reach out for help—your support system is there for you. If you have a therapist, psychiatrist, school counselor – they are available to you, even at a distance. Keep up your medications and your therapy sessions the best you can. If you are having difficulty coping, seek out help for the first time. There are mental health people on the ready to help you through this crisis.
- “Chunk” your quarantine, take it moment by moment. We have no road map for this. We don’t know what this will look like in 1 day, 1 week, or 1 month from now. “Chunking” – focusing on whatever bite-sized piece of a challenge that feels manageable. Whether that be 5 minutes, a day, or a week at a time – find what feels doable for you, and set a time stamp for how far ahead in the future you will let yourself worry. Take each chunk one at a time, and move through stress in pieces.
- Remind yourself daily that this is temporary. It seems in the midst of this quarantine that it will never end. Please take time to remind yourself that although this may seem indefinitely difficult, it is a chapter of life and it will pass. We will return to feeling connected and more free in the months ahead.
- Find the lesson. This whole crisis can seem sad, senseless, and at times, avoidable. When psychologists work with trauma, a key feature to helping someone work through said trauma is to help them find their agency, the potential positive outcomes they can effect, the meaning and construction that can come out of destruction. What can each of us learn here, in big and small ways, from this crisis? What needs to change in ourselves, our communities, our nation, our world?
National Parent Helpline | 1.855.4A.PARENT (1-855-427-2736)
211 or www.211.org – free & confidential referral line for many crisis-related needs
Schooling at home (video) https://gozen.com/coronavirus-anxiety/
Helping children cope https://www.nasponline.org/resources-and-publications/resources-and-podcasts/school-climate-safety-and-crisis/health-crisis-resources/helping-children-cope-with-changes-resulting-from-covid-19?fbclid=IwAR2qPcQ9tTi8fF3Ci81foJsGwstAEjhbPt5LLkUCn77w_2rzqWceI_OdFpM
How to talk to kids about what’s happening
Supporting teens & young adults during COVID-19 https://childmind.org
Crisis and LGBTQ youth
Some teletherapy resources (there are many, we don’t endorse specific orgs)
*General notice to consumers from CA Board of Psychology regarding teletherapy/e-Counseling: https://www.psychology.ca.gov/consumers/internet_thrpy.shtml