We are grateful to the PVCICS mental/emotional health specialists for providing this information.
What to do when you have an ongoing concern about your child’s mental and emotional wellbeing: 1. Contact Dr. Santana, our school psychologist, at firstname.lastname@example.org, Madelyn Farr, school counselor (K-8) at email@example.com or Maria Paoletti, school counselor (9-12) at firstname.lastname@example.org. Confidentiality is protected.
2. For serious concerns, contact a local psychiatric service center near you for an immediate evaluation by a clinician. Or for emergencies, call 911.
Coping resources: There are many websites that offer strategies designed for coping with the drastic lifestyle changes imposed by the pandemic, including distance learning from home – and the resulting isolation children and adults are experiencing. The plethora of information can be overwhelming. Given the school’s association with Move This World, (MTW), an organization devoted to the social, emotional and learning wellbeing of school children, PVCICS families have access to the MTW website and resources offered to parents. The benefit of visiting the MTV website is your student’s familiarity with the MTV videos shown daily at school to skillfully engage them in social-emotional skill-building activities. There are also videos designed for use by both parents and kids. You can also scroll through the different grade levels to access the videos your children are experiencing. Once you enter your child’s grade portal, click on the “Power of Pause” videos for shorter, user-friendly videos with coping tools you can practice with your child.
Here’s the MTW access info:
Go to the Move This World website: sel.movethisworld.com
Password: pioneervalley (Check out the MTW podcasts)
In the meantime for quick reference, here are some coping tools that do make a difference for you and your children:
1. Slow, deep breathing (5 breaths) several times a day
2. Daily exercise (Dance like no one is watching)
3. Time outside for fresh air (walks, playtime)
4. Ongoing breaks from screen-watching
5. Decent night’s sleep (and sane eating)
6. Spending some quality unrushed time with your children
7. Listening to your children, allowing them to voice how they’re feeling and validating their perspective.
8. Taking an evening minute to think about your own daily accomplishments, however small you may think they are.
9. Acknowledging your children’s efforts.
10. Reminding yourself what is worth being thankful for.
While it may feel like you are alone in your difficulties managing this chapter of our lives, you aren’t. We are all experiencing similar challenges, to greater and lesser degrees. If you need the support, don’t hesitate to reach out to any of the three mental/emotional health specialists listed above.