Most schools across Ghana have reopened and our tiny humans are finally going back to the classroom. Although some parents are delighted at this development, some may rightfully be uneasy because of the growing number of Covid-19 cases in Ghana.
Here are a few simple yet effective measures to keep your child safe and protected.
Remind them to always wear their face masks
Adults who have had to leave their homes and interact with other adults are now used to wearing these masks outside their homes but children who have been social distancing at home may not be. They will need to be trained to wear the mask at all times and reminded of the importance of doing so. It is advisable to have an extra face mask in their bags. Children must wear their face mask in the classroom, on the playground and every time they come in contact with other children and adults. Parents should ensure that masks are comfortable and are worn correctly.
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Remind them to always wash their hands and use hand sanitizer
Although, they are likely to know that they should be washing their hands regularly, children should be reminded to do so. You can come up with a schedule or routine with your children. For example, they can wash their hands immediately they get school, right before and after snack and lunch time and in between lessons. They should also have hand sanitizers in their bags and cab develop the routine of using sanitisers between lessons, especially, if they are unable to wash their hands.
Sharing is NOT caring during the pandemic
Many children have been taught that ‘sharing is caring’ and will need to learn that during the pandemic, not sharing shows that you care about your friends. If possible an extra set of stationery can be given to children in case they lose any. This should be done to avoid borrowing. Parents should also provide sufficient snacks or food to prevent them from buying or eating other children’s food.
Let children know that it is not safe to be too close to their friends and other people during this time. They must avoid holding hands, hugging or touching each other.
After school care
Taking care of children after school is also important in keeping them safe. Parents must change children's uniforms for each day of the week or, wash uniforms everyday after school. Parents must teach children to wash their hands immediately they get home or better yet have them bath before having dinner.
Communication is key
Parents must have meaningful conversations with children about COVID-19 and its implications.
It is important to continuously tell children what they need to do and why they have to take these precautionary measures. As a parent or a guardian you can remind your kids to continuously wear a mask, frequently wash hands, avoid borrowing and keep a safe distance from others before they leave for school.
At the end of the day parents can casually interrogate children on how they kept themselves protected.