With all that’s going on in the news and media lately, we often get asked for advice on talking to kids about current events. Kids of all ages and maturity levels will deal with disturbing stories in different ways, so it is important for parents to learn how to help kids put fear-provoking information into a reasonable perspective. Parents have to be prepared to share the truth, but do not need to go into more details than the child is interested in or ready to hear. Common Sense Media is a great resource to know about as the organization strives to help parents raise kids that will thrive in this digital age. Here they offer these 5 ways to help kids process the news as well as advice on ” Explaining the news to our kids .”
- Reassure them they are safe.
- Be open to questions.
- Turn off 24/7 TV channels, alerts and feeds.
- Seek out kid friendly news.
- Do some good.
The bottom line is that every child will have a slightly different way of handling the news and this will evolve as they age. Protect them while they are young, but start preparing them to handle the news and media so that if/when they are exposed they have the tools to interpret, absorb and cope on their own. (April 2018)
Dr. Jackie Bors