Consider taking your staff and children's temperature before they walk into your school. If they have a temperature of 100.4 or higher encourage them to go back home.
If safe, consider greeting children and placing your sign-in station outside or immediately close to your entrance. Coordinate and set a time limit around children's drop-off and pick-up to limit contact and large groups.
Set up a hand hygiene station at the entrance of your school to encourage caregivers and your staff's frequent hand washing.
Clean, sanitize, and disinfect surfaces and objects like toys that are frequently touched every15 minutes using soap and water or products with a high alcohol percentage; but keep cleaning products out of children's reach.
Encourage your staff to always cover their mouth and nose with a tissue or the inside of their elbow when they cough or sneezeand to immediately wash their handsto avoid thespread of the virus by silent carrier that do not show symptoms. Children under age 2 should NOT be using face masks or clothes to avoid suffocation.
Remind children of the importance of keeping their hands to themselves and to use no-touch greetings such as air high fives, waves, throw kisses, or verbal “Hellos”. Pick the handwashing song of your choice and make frequent hand washing part of their daily routine. Here are some resources:
Rearrange the children in common areas to create distance using visual aids like tape or stickers, make it a fun activity! Have children face the same direction (rather than each other) when sitting at a table and leave an empty chair in between. Coordinate the use of the playground and classrooms to avoid large groups.
Let children lead the conversation about the coronavirus. It is important for them to feel safe to talk to you about what they are feeling or thinking. Here are some resources:
Use age appropriate stories and videos that explain the coronavirus in non-scary ways. Here is a great resource and message from Manuela Molinares from MindHeart.Co:
Dear families and educator all over the world,
I have created this short book to support and reassure our children, under the age of 7, regarding COVID-19. This book is an invitation for families to discuss the full range of emotions arising from the current situation. It is important to point out that this resource does not seek to be a source of scientific information, but rather a tool based on fantasy... Remember that emotions are processed through repetitive play and stories read multiple times. Share COVIBOOK and help ease kiddo's anxiety all over the world.
With love, Manuela Molina, Author
For more content created by Manuela Molinares from the firstname.lastname@example.org visit her website, mindheart.co
We know that everyone's routines have changed but keep children busy.
For complete access to all of our child activity resources refer to our COVID-19 Resiliency and Support Services Toolkit.
Stress and worry are normal, but don't forget to take care of yourself! Remember to eat healthy, stay hydrated. Incorporate physical activity. Get plenty of sleep and take naps. Feeling scared or nervous is also normal but stay calm to reassure your children that everything is going to be okay.
Take deep breaths, stretch, give yourself a moment to meditate or stay still, or do something you enjoy. Help your children do the same. Here is one of our favorite resources, the Turtle Technique:
Here is another great resource from the National Association of School Psychologists about Helping Children Cope with Changes Resulting from COVID-19.
If you know of a child ages 0 to 5 that may benefit from direct interventions such as Speech, Behavior, Occupational, and Developmental Therapy please refer to the Early Discovery Program at the University of Miami, another initiative in collaboration with The Children's Trust. All services are free and offered in the location that is most convenient to you. During COVID-19, all services are provided via Telehealth. For more information or to request services send an email to KPena@miami.edu or call 305-243-4617.
Visit StayHome.Miami by The Children's Trust for addition resources during COVID-19.
We are grateful for your services and for supporting the children and families in our community!
Every early learning program that remains open during this time should have a plan in place to protect their staff, children, and families from the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19). The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have developed a few recommendations on the cleaning and disinfecting of common areas and surfaces. The Jump Start ECC team wants to support you in following these guidelines and make sure you are safe at all times.