OMS Covid-19 Updates

March 23, 2020

Dear OMS Families,

The OMS school counselors have been collaborating regarding the best way that we can support our families during this challenging time.  As school counselors, our role is to promote healthy social-emotional growth in our students. While school may be closed to ensure the health and safety for all, we continue to honor our commitment to student and families’ wellbeing by offering a range of resources aimed at educating, supporting, and engaging in social-emotional learning.  

Educating:

Various mediums are available for educating children about COVID-19, a form of coronavirus.  The resources below provide current developmentally appropriate information:

What Kids Want To Know About Coronavirus: An Original Comic: Goats and Soda

Just for Kids: A Comic Exploring The New Coronavirus

Talking with Children About Coronavirus Disease 2019 CDC

BrainPOP video about Coronavirus

Autism Parenting Magazine

Supporting:

There are many suggestions out there to support teens during this difficult time.  The following article does a great job highlighting the major ways parents can help their teens navigate the social and emotional distress they are experiencing.  

https://thriveglobal.com/stories/7-ways-to-help-our-teens-through-uncert...

In addition to the article, some other tips are:

Model healthy self-care practices for your family.  Possible self-care ideas are: working on a puzzle,  reading a book, cooking together, playing family games, or doing an indoor workout.  From seeing this modeled, children learn how to manage emotions in positive ways during challenging times.

Teach your teen some new life skills.  A clean bathroom makes everyone happy. 

And most importantly: Be kind to one another!

Engaging:

We included some websites and materials that you might find helpful to support and engage your children in social/emotional learning.   

Second Step is our district wide social/emotional curriculum.  The following are links to activities/resources for students and parents. 

Activity for students-  Reflection letter to yourself about this school year: https://www.cfchildren.org/blog/2019/05/middle-school-year-end-reflectio...

ParenTeen Connect--Resource for parents on how to tackle difficult topics with their teens: http://www.parenteenconnect.org/

Mindfulness/Relaxation videos and activities:

Kobe Bryant: The Power of Sleep and Meditation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LdrVVJPlUK4

The importance of mindfulness (Brainpop video): https://www.brainpop.com/health/psychologyandbehavior/mindfulness/

4-7-8 Breathing Exercise: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N02BnHwS5FE

Yoga for Anxiety 20 min: www.youtube.com/watch?v=bJJWArRfKa0

30 Mindfulness Activities for Teens: https://mindbe-education.com/30-mindfulness-activities-teens/

25 Fun Mindfulness Activities for Children and Teens (and Tips!): https://positivepsychology.com/mindfulness-for-children-kids-activities/

Common Sense Media Resource: https://www.commonsensemedia.org/

Best Empathy Games, Apps, and Websites for Kids: https://www.commonsensemedia.org/lists/best-empathy-games-apps-for-kids

Library Resources Available Online:  

Stoughton Public Library

Other Relevant Sites:

Free Educational and Social-Emotional Activities Available: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/

10+ Social Emotional Activities for Home: https://www.thepathway2success.com/10-sel-activities-for-home/
Pathways to Success Social Emotional Worksheets for home

In this time of uncertainty, we know these things remain certain: our commitment to supporting one another, caring for one another, and managing during times of challenge.  By uniting together we will get through. The world outside our houses has slowed down, and that may be a gift of time for us to look within our homes and see those we love, share in the things we enjoy, and create new traditions together.  It is an honor and a privilege to work together for the common good and to provide support and guidance. As a group we will continue to communicate and collaborate regarding how we can best support our students and families. If you would like additional support or resources, please email us, and we will respond as soon as possible.

Sincerely,

Corie Brookshire Grade 6: C_Brookshire@stoughtonschools.org
Sheila Coughlan Grade 7: S_Coughlan@stoughtonschools.org
Kevin Cronin Grade 8: K_Cronin@stoughtonschools.org