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Coronavirus: What Kids Can Do

D’Arcy Lyness, PhD1
August 2020

With all the talk about coronavirus, you might be wondering what kids can do. Here are the 4 best ways everyone (including kids) can help stop coronavirus:

1. Wash your hands

Use soap and water. Wash for 20 seconds. You can count slowly to 20. Or you can sing the happy birthday song twice. Be sure to wash the tops of your hands and between your fingers. Get your thumbs, and even your fingernails.

Always wash your hands after you use the bathroom. Wash them whenever you come in from outside, before you eat, after you play with a pet. Wash your hands after you blow your nose, sneeze, or cough.

2. Cover your sneeze or cough.

Sneeze or cough into your elbow, not your hand. Then wash your hands anyway. It's always fun to drown a germ with soap and water!

3. Only do the activities that your parents and the local people in charge say are safe.

This can help slow down the spread of germs. Wear a mask and keep your distance.

4. Wear a mask or cloth face covering when you go out.

Kids younger than 2 years old shouldn't cover their faces. But everyone else should because this helps prevent the spread of the virus. It's also important to stay at least 6 feet away from people you don't live with when you're out in public.

Washing hands isn't so hard. But changing our routines can be tough. It means not being with people you like to be with. And not going places you like to go.
So here are some more things kids can do:

Notice your feelings

Missing things — like playdates, school trips, and sports — can make you feel sad. But it won't be forever. For now, you can feel better if you stay in touch with people you miss. Talk on the phone or visit by video. You can draw pictures that show how you feel. Or talk about it with someone you feel close to.

Do things you enjoy

Try to have fun spending extra time with the people you live with.
When you're indoors, you can play games, read, do puzzles, make art, write a story, do a craft. You can dance, do yoga, build, learn, and play or listen to music. Go outside to ride bicycle, run, walk, or hike. Take some chalk and write happy messages on trails and sidewalks for other people to see

Be kind and helpful

All the changes due to coronavirus can make kids and adults feel stressed. Kids can help by doing little things that make a big difference.

Here are a few ideas:

  • Help take care of a little brother or sister, Keep them happy. Read to them and play with them.
  • Put your stuff away. Make your bed. Do your best with schoolwork. Ask (nicely) for help. Use kind words. Take your bath or shower without a fuss. Share. Offer to help with meals or cleanup.
  • Show love to your family. Give hugs. Help take care of your pet.Be kind to yourself too. Relax. Get outside to play when you can. When you're kind and helpful, it's nice for others in your family. And it helps you feel good too.