Welcome back to After School Tea Time! Keep those questions coming because you never know who you could be helping. Grab a seat and get your teacups ready for this week’s question!
Question from Fairfield County – In our program there has recently been an increase of children who are feeling upset and anxious about the pandemic. This causes many of them to have outbursts during our program. My staff have become overwhelmed because they cannot think of new ways to help calm them down. How can I help my staff with this issue?
Hello Fairfield, thank you for your question. There are many programs who are experiencing the same issues with their children and staff, especially during this time. The first thing I would do is try to get an understanding of what specific things are stressful for the children in your program. It would be helpful to dedicate some time during your program to do a group check-in and allow all of the children to explain what things have been stressing them out. Once you have this list you can dedicate time each day to teach them how to cope with that stress. As for your staff, I would suggest to also dedicate some time to go over some social-emotional learning practices with them. Give them resources that will help them learn more about how they can incorporate SEL into their interactions within the classroom. You can even come up with classroom scenarios and ask them how they would solve the issue using the new strategies that they learn. Here is an activity you can do with your classroom to help to get know what exactly has been bothering them. The activity is for getting to know your students, but you can adjust it to help them express their frustrations. Here is an article about how adults can practice SEL through self-awareness and self-management that you can share with your staff. We hope that this will be helpful for your situation.
We’ll see you next week for another segment of After School Tea Time! Don’t forget to submit your anonymous questions here.