How to Talk to Your Child About Social Distancing

Andrew Silva, 18 Jun 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has, at this moment, changed the way we do even the simplest of everyday activities. In addition to social distancing, greater care and attention are also paid to the frequency of washing hands, touching our face and sanitising. While these practices are as a direct result of the contagiousness of the virus, it does not mean that everything will return to normal as soon as this public health crisis is over. Childcare centres around Australia will surely continue to implement social distancing where possible. Naturally, children will have questions about social distancing. Some may not understand the concept and others may not grasp how to practise it. It is important that you speak to your child about social distancing carefully, accurately and appropriately. While there isn’t always a clear cut method of doing this, we have devised a few guidelines for doing so.

Utilise different methods of explaining what social distancing is

Kids, especially younger ones, don’t quite understand what social distancing is, how far away 1.5 metres is or when it has to be implemented. Social distancing is a complicated topic in a scary setting. When explaining to children, use a fun or familiar method to discuss what social distancing means. For example, use their stuffed toy animals and separate them 1.5 metres apart to show how far we should be distancing from each other when in a grocery line for instance.

Explain the effects of not practising social distancing

While children may begin to understand the concept of social distancing, grasping the seriousness of the situation can be a completely different story. Without scaring them, carefully explain what may happen if you do not distance. You’ll have to use your child’s age as a gauge for what language to use and how many details you can release. Generally, explaining that without social distancing germs can be spread which can make loved ones very sick, is a safe way of explaining the seriousness of the situation without scaring your child. The goal is not to terrify them into listening to you, but for them to understand why it is important to social distance.

Emphasise the positive solutions around social distancing

After explaining social distancing and why it has to happen, children may begin to feel sad, disconnected and confused about when they can’t see and hug their loved ones. Thankfully, there are many methods for connecting with persons in 2020. Focus on the positives with your child and let them understand that they can still video call their grandparents or any other loved ones that they may be missing. Let them know that on the days they are at home at not in care, they can spend time with you and partake in some of their favourite activities.

Ensure they feel heard and responded to

Your child will definitely have questions about the situation. Sometimes, they may have a range of responses as well. The key is to be prepared. Answer your child’s questions appropriately and refrain from saying, “Because I said so,” or, “That’s how it has to be.” Genuinely try to quell their concerns.

Young Academics Early Learning Centre is committed to providing a safe environment for all children. This is why we are determined to implement practices that adhere to recent health guidelines, including social distancing, for the foreseeable future. Like the rest of the world, we understand that there will be a new normal.

At our centres, we strive to provide a safe and secure second home for your little one, during the pandemic and after as well. This is why we have incorporated strict hygiene guidelines into our daycare’s policies. We understand the anxiety that these times can bring and hope that our commitment to cleanliness and safety will quell some of your concerns. As a reminder, here are some of the policies that Young Academics has introduced into its daycares.

  • We have increased the frequency of cleaning at our centres, going beyond regulations.
  • Parent door codes have been disabled. Parents are required to ring the doorbell in order to drop or pick up their child. This minimises the number of persons in the centre.
  • We have cancelled all incursions and excursions to reduce contact with other persons.

Our experienced and professional staff are dedicated to ensuring that your little one is kept healthy and secure during his or her time at Young Academics Early Learning Centre. For more information about our centre, contact us today on 1300 668 993

Want to join the Young Academics family? Drop your details here, and our friendly team will be in touch with you shortly.

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