Resources for Parents

Guide to Help Families Cope with Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) 

Click here to scroll down to general wellbeing resources

Support for Parents during School Closure

The current situation is likely to be stressful. The closure of school can disrupt children’s social support systems and increase feelings of isolation. The following recommendations may help manage the stress in this situation. *Guidance drawn from NCTSN.

It’s also worth looking at ParentTV resources. This video was made specifically to talk about chaos at home – something you might be experiencing yourselves at the moment.

Stay updated about what is happening. The Centre of Health Protection has the most up to date information about the situation. Use official media outlets and public health websites for information.

Seek support from friends and families. Talk to each other on the phone, through video links, by texting. Encourage children to do the same – help them to join class meet-ups online if there are any.

Maintain a healthy diet and exercise. Find ways to exercise without going out. There are plenty of videos online – Go Noodle has some great ideas for kids. Here are also some examples of activities that require no resources. 

Limit media and social media viewing. Although parents and caregivers should stay informed, try to minimise exposure to television news or other information that might promote stress or panic. Particularly, limit the media viewing of children. Try to check what children are viewing and clarify any questions or information.

Maintain family routines. Try to keep to consistent schedules when it comes to bedtimes, meals and exercise. Identify different activities to do together at home, such as resting, reading, watching movies, listening to music, playing games, exercising. See activity ideas recommended by our counselling team.

Balancing school and home time. Keep to the routine of the school day but be flexible, depending on your child’s needs. If possible set up different spaces for school work and relaxing or use a cloth cover to symbolically leave the work space behind. Get children involved in making suggestions for things to do during their time away from school work.

Initiate conversations and offer support. Help children understand the situation and talk about their feelings. Encourage children to express themselves through drawing or other activities. Create household jobs that involve children. Recognise that feelings such as guilt, loneliness, boredom, fear of contracting the disease, anxiety, stress and panic are normal reactions to a stressful situation.

Practice self-care. You may need to shift your own expectations and priorities to focus on what gives you meaning and purpose or fulfilment.

Managing our Mental Health & Staying Well during a Virus Outbreak
Managing Emotions during Troubled Times 
As we face troubled times here in Hong Kong, we would like to share some tips for having conversations with your children and helping to manage the emotions that may arise. 
  • Limit media exposure. Children under the age of six should not be watching the news as they often believe that what they are seeing is new and that it is happening again and again.
  • Be aware of social media filters – the algorithms may ensure that teenagers repeatedly see upsetting scenes and information without the support of adults. Teach teenagers how this works so they can make more informed judgements.
  • Help children and teenagers know that it is the adult’s role to keep them safe and that we all take that role seriously.
  • Support children to talk about what is happening and about how it might impact them. Listen to their concerns about the future.
  • Help children and teenagers to check sources and understand how quickly false rumors can spread on social media.
  • Take care not to project your own anxiety onto children.
  • Be aware for any signs of distress – see the help sheet below.
  • Maintain a routine, keep things as normal as possible and focus on positive experiences as well as reflecting on the current situation.

RCHK Parenting in troubled times guidelines

National Child Trauma Support Network Helping Young Children

RCHK Talking to Children about the Unrest

RCHK Adult Guidelines for Children and Teenagers

RCHK Advice for Teenagers in Troubled Times

Supporting Wellbeing at Home

We know that our RCHK parents are keen to assist in the development of Wellbeing at RCHK, and we are often asked about the ways in which they can support students in the key areas that we focus on.

Some useful resources for supporting students can be found here.

What We Value: The Roots of Wellbeing at RCHK

 

What We Learn: The Routes to Wellbeing at RCHK

Character Strengths
At RCHK we use the VIA classification of Character Strengths, which can be found here. You can find out your own strengths, and equip yourself to talk to you about your childrens’. Lea Waters also offers suggestions for strengths-based parenting on her website blog and in her book, The Strength Switch.

Mindfulness
There are many excellent apps and sites for mindfulness available. Smiling Mind is used in Year 4 as a programme shared with students, but also offers great options for at home practice for children, teenagers and adults.

Resilience
How To Build Resilience In Your Family – What To Do When Your Family Is Struggling: this article from The Greater Good Magazine gives some suggestions for ways to face challenging times with your family.

 

Resources

Below you will find a wide range of resources to help you implement Wellbeing at Home

Health

Commonsense media – useful website to rate all media: games, apps, books, movies, tv shows

Amaze Parents – support for adolescent sexual health/development

Nourish Interactive – resource for following a balanced diet and getting daily exercise

Physical Activity Calendar – Daily suggestions for daily physical activities

Cultivate Balance in Mental Health and Energy – tips for helping kids develop coping skills

Mindfulness with Children – 25 easy activities to practice mindfulness with kids

Environment

Commonsense media – useful website to rate all media: games, apps, books, movies, tv shows

Tips for keeping your child’s workspace organised

Tips for maintaining a positive environment at home

You and the Environment – How you can help the environment

Teaching Children to Care for the Planet10 easy, everyday tips we can use to teach our kids to lighten their carbon footprint

Accomplishment

Celebrate the Little Things – Everyday successes to celebrate

Goal Setting with Kids – tips for setting goals with your child

Encouraging Perseverance – tips for setting goals and encouraging perseverance with kids

Relationships

Parenting with Love and Logic – weekly free tips for parents and teachers, inspiration and special offers to help strengthen your relationship with the kids in your life. Subscribe here

Kelso’s Choice – conflict resolution strategies for children to solve small problems independently.

Third Culture Kids

Resources

TCK books

Parenting Support – positive support for parents through the parenting life-cycle

HK Parent Support – Government run site for HK parents

How to Practice Unconditional Parenting in Real Life: Some Helpful Resources

How to discipline children

Parenting Siblings

不打不罵教孩子(Positive Parenting) A list of cases and suggestions for positive parenting situations in Chinese language.

Parenting – Eating Issues

Parenting- Dealing With Grief

List of parenting books

Emotional Coaching

Our uniquely designed Character Strength Cards are a handy resource for use at home, and even on the go, especially for those in the Primary years.

These cards have been created by using imagery inspired by our Year 3 students, and wording from students in Year 6.

Each card incorporates the concept of Positive Education being at the #HeartOfRCHK, and features character illustrations wearing the RCHK uniform shirts.

A complete set of 24 cards can be purchased in the RCHK Stationery Shop for only HK$9!

Dealing with emotions:
There is no good or bad emotions, what matters is how we deal with them. When your child is throwing a tantrum, use ‘Time In’ strategy for challenging behaviours:

Stay with your child when he/she is asked to calm down. Once he/she is calm, hug him/her, and talk about the situation and encourage your child to talk about the causes, and ways to deal with similar situations.

  1. Give notice promptly
  2. Empathise with your child, e.g. You are crying because you can’t fix this.
  3. Recognise the emotion, give it a name (sad, disappointed, frustrated), e.g. Now you are feeling frustrated.
  4. Allow your child to express his/her emotion through different ways, e.g. stress ball, have a quiet space, cry
  5. Talk to your child once him/her is calm, recall the situation/scenario
  6. Brainstorm ways to deal with frustration/disappointment, e.g. tell parents, leave the scene, deep breath, self talk
  7. Encourage your child to use the ways to express feelings
  8. Discuss the situations/feeling of the main characters when reading books, or encountering similar situations during outing

Meaning and Purpose
One of the areas that many people struggle with is finding purpose and meaning for themselves. Knowing your purpose is part of having a sense of accomplishment and contributes to positive emotionsThe Purpose Challenge is designed to help teenagers to find their purpose, and offers supportive tools for adults and students as well.