How You and Your Kids Can De-Stress During Coronovirus
If you are feeling stress about the COVID-19 pandemic, your brain isn’t misfiring! Stress is is a response that gets us ready to act—to protect ourselves and our loved ones.
Thankfully, we have good tools for calming this stress response when it not helping us—tools that can be used in this or any other situation. This is something parents and children can do together.
When we are anxious or upset, our heart rate increases and our breath becomes more shallow. When we take deep breaths, we send a message back to our brain: It’s okay to calm down.
With your child, try pretending your fingers are birthday candles and blow them out one by one.
Turn Down the FireHOSE
Here are four questions we can ask ourselves when we feel our mood dip or their anxiety rise—four questions that help us turn down the hose.
H: Am I hungry?
Hunger affects mood and when we haven’t eaten for a while, our blood sugar dips, and this triggers a stress response. At
EFC we are serving breakfast at 8:00 am, lunch between 11:00-12:00 pm and a snack at 3:00/3:30 pm. We are keeping a routine so children know what to expect next.
Am I overstimulated?
There’s only so much our brains and bodies can take in, and we all need downtime to recharge. Play is a great way to relieve stress and build connections. At EFC we are offering children free choice time in interest areas for large periods of time. You may find that they are a little extra tired after attending preschool since it has been several months since they have been used to this routine but this will pass as they become used to it again.
Do I need sleep
Sleep is the glue that holds human beings together. Keeping routine sleep times is very important for us all year. At EFC we have a daily nap time/rest time for your child to be able to settle for a while to recharge.
Do I need exercise?
Little bodies and big bodies need to move. Exercise boosts mood and improves focus and cognition. It helps us to be responsive instead of reactive. At EFC we offer several outdoor playground times each day and the preschool classrooms are attending soccer each week. We plan on offering bike day and water days this summer as well to encourage fun movement.
Yes, our routines are being disrupted…however this is an opportunity for us to take a deep breath and turn down the fireHOSE. We are here to help face this challenge together with your family.
(This information has been taken from pbs.org/parents.)