A few days after the presidential election, in one of our own classrooms, a 5-year-old declared, “My Mom voted for Trump.”
“Trump’s an idiot!” a 6-year-old classmate replied. And then a teacher stepped in.
In our schools, on the playgrounds, in our homes, conversations like this are going on amongst children ages 2 to 18 – often as not, unsupervised. Older children have been suspended from school for posting threats and ridiculing others.
What does it mean to these children that the country is so divided, that adults and the media are making frightening predictions of what’s to come? What does it mean to children of color or different religions? And what does it mean to their friends?
This post is not about politics, it is about the things children hear and say. How do we, as parents and teachers, help them sort it out? How do we help those who are frightened to feel safe?
Click here to learn six strategies for talking to your kids in this heightened political environment, courtesy of Hanna Perkins Center for Child Development.
The Hanna Perkins Center for Child Development helps children understand and manage their feelings for success in school and life; and works with parents and child-facing professionals to do the same. Services include a preschool and state-chartered kindergarten, mental health clinic for children and adolescents, and outreach/training for early childhood educators and other professionals.