You notice that Mary who is generally a shy and quiet 9 year old kid, appears to be wiping tears from her eyes. You know that Mary has experienced financial insecurity at home and she appears anxious at school, seems to be struggling to complete her homework and when asked to respond to a question appears agitated. When you approach the student, she tells you that she lately feels overwhelmed and very anxious about everything that she has to do about school. She feels worried and doesn’t know how and where to start with her homework and school responsibilities.
Thank you for sharing that with me. I noticed you were tearful, and I’m very sorry that you’re upset. I won’t pretend to know exactly how you’re feeling, but I understand you are feeling anxious about schoolwork. Sometimes, we become overwhelmed with our everyday responsibilities especially if we have been through the difficult process of worrying a lot about money. This is only natural. If you feel comfortable, please tell me more about how you’re feeling and how you’ve been affected. Do your parents know how you feel lately? You could discuss your worries and concerns with your parents or your peers because sometimes sharing our worries with loved ones can make us feel much better. I can also support you by discussing how best to organise your schoolwork in time.
A 15 year old student, Gary, shows up to class after not coming for a couple of weeks. Over the following days Gary appears sad, and is not talking to any of his classmates as he used to. You have noticed that Gary often seems distracted and looks like he is tired or hasn’t slept well, with low energy. As everyone is packing up their bags at the end of class, you approach the student. After talking privately with you in the empty classroom for a few minutes, the student discloses that he doesn’t want to be in school, he is feeling hopeless and tired all the time and sometimes has trouble getting up from bed.
Sites with specific information on how to how to help children in the COVID-19 pandemic
Your Tough Conversation Toolkit is helpful if you:
Your Tough Conversation Toolkit- Here are some examples of how to start a conversation: