Victoria Vigilanti
September 9, 2020

COVID-19: How to Prepare Your Kids for a Safe Return to School

It’s time for your kids to return to school, but this year, your back to school to-do list is a little different than usual. The first point on your list is most likely educating your kids on how to reduce their risk of catching the coronavirus disease. Alongside your children’s pencil case and lunch box, they will also find hand sanitizer and a facemask. More importantly, teaching your child proper safety habits at school will be more beneficial than just providing them with the necessary safety essentials.

Here are 4 ways to prepare your kids for a safe return to school:

Routine is Key

After ending their previous school year with remote learning, and enjoying the rest of their summer, establishing a back to school routine with your children will be very beneficial. Kids behave and do best when they know what to expect; that is why we suggest making a weekly calendar. You can outline which days will be online learning, and what days they will be going to school. You can even take it to the next step and thoroughly go through the events of each day.

Healthy but Safe Lunches

Lunchtime will be an interesting time as students return to school. Make it more accessible for your child and provide them with a lunch that will reduce their risk of germ spreading. 

  • Easy to open packaging: This will minimize assistance from teachers, staff and other children.
  • Avoid messy foods: The less your child spills on their hands, the less likely they will lick them. 
  • Pack their favourites: You don’t want your child sharing with their friends because they don’t like what mom or dad packed. To ensure they are eating their own lunch, pack what your child enjoys! Better yet, get them involved in the lunch process, so your kids can help choose what they eat that day.

Practice Makes Perfect

It all starts with your child habits at home. It will be beneficial if your child understands the importance of washing their hands before and after each activity. Practising this at home will ensure that they will continue this routine when they return to school. 

Even more important will be ensuring your child is wearing a mask throughout the day. Show your child the proper way to wear a mask, and when they should be wearing one. A great activity you can do is to build up their mask tolerance. You can slowly increase the length of time your child wears a mask, and by the time they return to school, they will be entirely comfortable, and it will become a natural habit. 

Safe Socializing

We all know our kids love their friends, and it would be unfair to think that they won’t be tempted to hang out with them in groups at school. We suggest that your child stays with a close group of friends. Being social is a crucial aspect in child development, by sticking with a close group of friends, for the time being, will benefit your child greatly. 

An even better option is to encourage your child to spend time with friends outside. While the weather is still nice, your children can walk with their friends to school, or ride a bike instead of taking the bus, if possible. 

With all this information being thrown at your children, they may begin to feel overwhelmed and scared. Your children will need you there to reassure them. The best thing you can do is communicate with your child daily to ensure they are feeling safe and comfortable. 

We wish you and your family a fun and safe return to school!

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