Positive Links for Children, Teens and Families during the Coronavirus (#50)

Week 50

COVID-19 Links 17.03.2021-

This Week’s Best Links

COMIC: How One Math Teacher Broke Through To Her Virtual Students

NPR consistently has the best comic series for learning about COVID-19 on the Internet. This one is from a teacher’s perspective and will provide empathy for all those working hard to reach young people during this pandemic.

Youth anxiety and depression are at record levels. Mental health hubs could be the answer

I would suggest a mental health hub in every community around the world at this time. This article takes a look at what Australia is doing right for pandemic-stressed youth and there is also a link to the WHO’s best practices site on Mental Health Hubs.

CDC Says You Can Finally Do This Again After Vaccination | Eat This Not That

We need some hopeful messages about why we should take a vaccine and what we can look ahead to if we reach herd immunity.

What if Some Mental Disorders Aren't Actually Disorders at All? 

Having been an ADD kid, I found this article very important. What if kids are being diagnosed and treated when they aren’t actually the problem? ADHD diagnoses have increased significantly during the pandemic, but were kids actually meant to sit for hours in Zoom settings?

Our Kids Are Not Broken

Our messaging to kids about this pandemic year is really important. They pick up their cues from us and if we keep calling them broken, they will believe it. This article looks at some of the important things kids have learned and accomplished during this time.


This Week’s Links


COMIC: How One Math Teacher Broke Through To Her Virtual Students

Canada's largest province says it's in the third wave -- and officials worry the vaccine rollout may not happen fast enough

'Absolutely inexcusable': Emails reveal Alberta's outrage at government travel scandal

Sask. has least stringent COVID-19 measures among provinces, highest case rates | CBC News

AstraZeneca COVID-19 Vaccine Trial Data Questioned By Safety Board


Youth anxiety and depression are at record levels. Mental health hubs could be the answer

Your most prized travel accessory is about to become your vaccine passport

Opinion: Will life soon return to normal?

Spring Breakers Could Bring COVID Home With Them, Warns Expert | Eat This Not That

Canada expects major surge in COVID-19 vaccine deliveries this week

Regina's drive-thru vaccine clinic now open to anyone 58 and older

Krispy Kreme will offer free doughnuts—all year long—to people with COVID-19 vaccination cards

‘Life-saving’ nose spray that kills 99.9% of viruses begins production in Israel


If You’ve Been Vaccinated, Here’s When You Can Remove Your Mask | Eat This Not That Says You Can Finally Do This Again After Vaccination | Eat This Not That

You Should Still Get Vaccinated Even If You've Already Had COVID-19, Study Shows

The Multibillion-Dollar Question: How Long Do COVID Vaccines Last?

Experts say it's a tight race between coronavirus variants and vaccines in the US as air travel hits records and spring break crowds grow


What if Some Mental Disorders Aren't Actually Disorders at All? 

Our Kids Are Not Broken

"He's dead wrong": Dr. Fauci clashes with Senator Rand Paul about wearing masks after vaccination

Why your arm might be sore after getting a vaccine

More Black And Latinx Americans Are Embracing COVID-19 Vaccination

Next Pandemic: Scientists Fear Another Coronavirus Could Jump From Animals To Humans

Regina public and Catholic schools to move online due to concern over coronavirus variants

5 chore apps that might get your kids to clean their room already

3 ways employers can help fight vaccine skepticism



1-year Anniversary

Responding To Coronavirus (COVID-19)


When under stress, children find safety in routine. “Don’t let this time of social distancing become social isolation for your children and youth.”

Children learn how to deal with stress by watching the adults around them deal with it. Young ones—especially those who’ve experienced adverse experiences in their lives—are “extra attuned” to subtle adult signs of stress. Be conscious of your own mindfulness and need for calm at this time.


If a child does have a meltdown (or an increased number of them) remember the 3 R’s of helping children through emotional outbursts:

Regulate: There is no reasoning with a person whose emotions are boiling over. Instead, meet them where they are and bring them to your level of calm. A good example would be to sit in a soft chair together and ask your child to breath with you. 

Relate: After they feel calm, it is important to reaffirm your unconditional acceptance of the child. Tell your child you understand their feelings, that feelings can sometimes be really strong and often overwhelming. Let them know you love them even when they are angry.

Reason: Only after the first two steps have been completed will children feel ready to listen and share. Now you can reason with the child. Include the child in creating positive alternatives for responding to overwhelming emotions.


Books, cooking, music arts and crafts; this is a great opportunity to expand young minds in ways they are often too busy to pursue. It is also a chance to share mindfulness techniques together. I like to teach the children and youth I work with a Q.R.S. technique: There are three steps to it. As in all mindfulness techniques, it is important to be intentional and slow down your breathing with each step, then repeat them as often as necessary.

Q: “Quiet my brain (or mind)” let go of your racing thoughts and be present in the moment.

R: “Relax my body” (focus on a part of your body where you normally feel the stress; neck? shoulders? stomach? Wherever it is, focus on that part of your body and repeat this statement until you feel that part of your body relaxing.

S: “Smile and breath.” Slowly. When you sincerely smile for ninety seconds, it actually forces your body to release endorphins (dopamine) that stimulate the pleasure centers of your brain.

Keep in mind that your child is picking up messages about the coronavirus, some of which might be accurate, but many are not. Accuracy and optimism are critical aspects to overcoming feelings of helplessness that often occur during times like these. Show your child how to build on the things you can control and let go of the things you can’t control. You can tell your children to do this, but they need to see it role-modeled by you in order to adopt it as habitual behavior. Show them how you breathe deeply and count to ten when you feel sad or angry. Make a game of taking a moment between your feelings and your actions. You can even use sock puppets as characters in a play. Model the behavior, then let your child make up their own play.

This is an excellent time to sit down and create hand-written letters to loved ones, consider especially those in your family who are elderly or may be susceptible to Coronavirus (COVID-19), express your love and support to them. It is also a great time for children and youth to write (or draw) gratitude letters to people in their lives for whom they are grateful. Consider teachers, but you can also include people you do not know like Health Care workers, first responders and long-term care facility employees. 

Before meals, discuss things for which you are grateful. Gratitude is a very important habit to grow with children and practices like this will help children not only be grateful in the moment, but also look for things they can be thankful for throughout the day—and their lives!

There are a number of things that parents can model and children can do to both slow the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) and reduce the chance of infection. Here is a short list:

Hand washing: Wash hands often with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds (the length of singing “Happy Birthday”) or use this time for mindfulness such as the QRS Technique above. If hand washing is unavailable, use a sanitizer, especially after coughing or sneezing and when handling food. A sanitizer is not as effective as hand-washing, but it does reduce a significant amount of germs.

Cough/sneeze etiquette: Cough and sneeze into your arm or a clean tissue.

Keep clean: Keep hands away from your face and mouth.

Social Distancing: Stay away from large groups and when in public, keep at least 2 meters (a little over 6 feet) from the people around you. Bump elbows and avoid shaking hands. For guidelines on parks and playgrounds, please see the article below (Playgrounds, babysitters, grandparents: What’s safe for kids in the age of coronavirus?)

Stay healthy: Stay healthy by eating healthy foods, keeping physically active, getting enough sleep. Check out the article below: The Body Coach Joe Wicks is holding online PE sessions for the nation's children.

Let your child know it is okay to be concerned about the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and that you are available to answer their questions. Responses don’t need to be complicated or scientific, simple and age-appropriate replies are best. If you are with an older child, looking for more in-depth responses, I’ve included two links (below) to the WHO website. Remember, regardless of age, it is always best to explore new information together. Avoid sending children and youth to explore the Internet alone. Consider the Internet is like a potentially dangerous neighborhood in your community. You wouldn’t send your child there alone nor should you send them to the Internet alone; there are too many dangers. Check out the article below, how to talk to children about coronavirus.

Canada has a resource available to children and youth that provides access to free mental health support. It’s called Kids Help Phone. It offers help in text, phone and live chat. It also helps children and youth locate available resources locally. Topics covered include COVID-19, anxiety, coping with tragedy, sexual assault, Q&A Counseling, dating, suicide, family issues and more. The link is provided below in the Online Resource section.

In an article from NPR (see link below), one high school teacher who is now home with his daughters is calling this a “Coranaissance”, combining the term Coronavirus with the Renaissance; a chance to grow the creative and artistic side of our children.


The WHO (World Health Organization) has a list of things to avoid at this time.

COVID-19 has and is likely to affect people from many countries, in many geographical locations. Don’t attach it to any ethnicity or nationality. Be empathetic to those who got affected, in and from any country, those with the disease have not done anything wrong. ?

Don’t - refer to people with the disease as “COVID-19 cases”, “victims” “COVID-19 families” or the “diseased”. They are “people who have COVID-19”, “people who are being treated for COVID-19”, “people who are recovering from COVID-19” and after recovering from COVID- 19 their life will go on with their jobs, families and loved ones. ?

Avoid watching, reading or listening to news that cause you to feel anxious or distressed; seek information mainly to take practical steps to prepare your plans and protect yourself and loved ones. Seek information updates at specific times during the day once or twice. The sudden and near-constant stream of news reports about an outbreak can cause anyone to feel worried. Get the facts. Gather information at regular intervals, from WHO website and local health authorities’ platforms, in order to help you distinguish facts from rumors. 


Keep in mind your child doesn’t have to be busy all the time. Our brains are often in their most creative state during times of relaxed play. Neurologists refer to this as transient hypofrontality, which simply means letting the brain temporarily focus on an engaging task so the frontal lobe can take a break. Adults do this whenever they are super-absorbed in a craft. It’s a time when we are most available to creative learning. Plan time for solo play for your child; no electronics and no agenda. 


'We need to be careful this month' — Dr. Scott Gottlieb says Covid masks still needed for now

Here's what experts say is needed for US to return to normal. But these barriers stand in the way

I'm Vaccinated Against COVID-19, But My Kids Aren't. What's Safe for Us? 

Special Report: as U.S. Schools Shuttered, Student Mental Health Cratered, Reuters Finds

How To Heal From COVID-Induced Trauma, According To A Harvard-Trained Psychiatrist

COVID-19: Retired health-care workers answer call to help on front lines

The future of learning lies in fostering creativity

How effective is the first shot of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine?

Facebook Is Building An Instagram For Kids Under The Age Of 13

This country has just been named the happiest in the world

Take a peek at the places we're going as soon as we can

Recipes For Kicking Off The First Day Of Spring



29 Numbers Showing How COVID-19 Pandemic Changed Our Lives 

COVID-19: What you need to know about the coronavirus pandemic on 18 March

First baby in U.S. born with antibodies against COVID-19 after mom receives dose of Moderna vaccine while pregnant

Alberta's top doctor says 'no' to interprovincial travel for Spring Break

Coronavirus: What's happening in Canada and around the world on Thursday

Regina schools told to assume majority, or all, COVID-19 cases stem from highly contagious variants

Saskatchewan's ambiguous pandemic communication feels political

How to help kids recover from a year of pandemic schooling

Using a Calm Down Corner Instead of Time Outs Brought My Son and I Closer Together

Burnout Isn't Just Exhaustion. Here's How To Deal With It

Bruce Lee's Daughter on Increasing Violence Toward Asian Americans: "This Is Where 'Kung Flu' Leads"

The Best Recipes to Make for St. Patrick's Day

Review: Waffles + Mochi Is the Sesame Street of Food TV | Time

A Neuroscientist Explains How to Quiet Your Mind and Find Some Peace

The number of unruly passengers on US flights is too high, FAA says, so it's extending a get-tough policy on masking

With Nearly Half of Israelis Fully Vaccinated, Coronavirus Cases Plummet

Palestinians get 60,000 vaccine doses through WHO program

St. Patrick’s Day with the Muppets


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