Kids are back in school, and whilst most parents would agree that this is a good thing and children need normality to return, it is important to be aware that Covid-19 has not gone away, and not everything will be the same. With this in mind, here are five of the best ways to keep kids safe during the school year.
1) Have a vaccinated household
The first and perhaps most important way to protect your children during this time is to make sure all eligible members of your household, family and friends are fully vaccinated. Not only will this help to keep the children and your family safe, it will also provide more protection for the wider community - dramatically reducing the chance of your kids transmitting the virus to others at school.
2) Encourage mask-wearing
While there are no longer specific mandates and strict guidance on wearing a mask, it does provide an extra form of protection and should be encouraged. Children often copy and take on what their parents or guardians do, so it is always good to set an example on why masks are important and how to wear them.
3) Continue to keep good hygiene
The importance of washing or sanitizing hands has always been an essential lesson to teach kids as they grow up, but now so more than ever. Not just after using the toilet or before eating, but particularly after touching public surfaces and coming home from school. Whether it be learning to wash hands for twenty seconds or how to cough and sneeze in a sanitary manner, these habits will help to create a safer environment for not only your child but the wider community around them.
4) Communicate openly
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected everyone - arguably one of most affected of all being the younger generation. While some children will enjoy returning to a sense of normality, others may struggle and be overwhelmed by the back-to-school season. It is important to check in with them sometimes. Ask about their time at school, make sure to listen, and always offer reassurance and support if and when they need it.
5) Re-establish regular routine
It would be strange if your normal routine hasn’t changed over the last year and a half. Sleep schedule, diet, physical activity - just to name a few - have all more than likely taken a hit in some way or another. The back-to-school season offers an opportunity to re-establish a routine and develop healthy habits for your children. Sensible bedtimes and wake up times are proven to dramatically improve and boost health, whether that be energy, productivity or just general outlook on life. Even the most minor routines and patterns help when it comes to the health and wellbeing of children during this time.
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