Wellness Wednesday

Resources for K-5 families

Dear Families,

As we all navigate our new circumstances, we can expect that it will take time for all of us to adjust to the many changes in our day to day lives. This newsletter will offer some suggestions, activities and resources that you or your children can use on this journey. Please know that you can also reach out to via email, or by phone should you have any questions or if you need any assistance.

What's normal, what helps, and why-

You have probably used some of these tips and strategies already, however it never hurts to look for some information to help guide us through new situations. The following information is summarized from an excerpt published by Sara Nevels, Psy.D. in the specialities of School and Clinical Psychology

  • Spend extra time playing with children. Children do not always communicate how they are feeling, but will often make a bid for attention and communication through play. Don’t be surprised to see therapeutic themes of illness, doctor visits, and isolation play though. Understand that play is cathartic and helpful for children—it is how they process their world and problem solve, and there’s a lot they are seeing and experiencing in the now.

  • Give everyone the benefit of the doubt, and a wide berth. A lot of cooped up time can bring out the worst in everyone. Each person will have moments when they will not be at their best. It is important to move with grace through blowups, to not show up to every argument you are invited to, and to not hold grudges and continue disagreements. Everyone is doing the best they can to make it through this.

  • Expect behavioral issues in children, and respond gently. We are all struggling with disruption in routine, none more than children, who rely on routines constructed by others to make them feel safe and to know what comes next. Expect increased anxiety, worries and fears, nightmares, difficulty separating or sleeping, testing limits, and meltdowns. Do not introduce major behavioral plans or consequences at this time—hold stable and focus on emotional connection.

  • Focus on safety and attachment. We are going to be living for a bit with the unprecedented demand of meeting all work deadlines, homeschooling children, running a sterile household, and making a whole lot of entertainment in confinement. We can get wrapped up in meeting expectations in all domains, but we must remember that these are scary and unpredictable times for children. Focus on strengthening the connection through time spent following their lead, through physical touch, through play, through therapeutic books, and via verbal reassurances that you will be there for them in this time.

  • Find an expressive art and go for it. Our emotional brain is very receptive to the creative arts, and it is a direct portal for release of feeling. Find something that is creative (sculpting, drawing, dancing, music, singing, playing) and give it your all. See how relieved you can feel. It is a very effective way of helping kids to emote and communicate as well!

  • Find lightness and humor in each day. There is a lot to be worried about, and with good reason. Counterbalance this heaviness with something funny each day: cat videos on YouTube, a stand-up show on Netflix, a funny movie—we all need a little comedic relief in our day, every day.

For the kids!

Social Emotional Learning Video Lessons - Self-Management Week 3

Free Mindfulness Tools!

Remember the Blue Sky

Community Resources

Needing Emergency Support?

United Way 211: call 211 for any type of help! Financial, emotional, health, etc. They have all the answers, seriously

Crisis Text Line: 24/7 texting support from a trained counselor, text Hello to 741741

Albany County Mental Health Support Line: (518)269-6634 available from 8am-5pm seven days a week.

Albany Mobile Crisis: M-F 8am-10pm, Sat/Sun 11am-7pm, call 518-292-5499

Save the date

Tuesday, April 21st, 5pm

This is an online event.

Keep a lookout for more information about a virtual assembly for VES!