March 26, 2020
Dear Parents, Grandparents and Adult Guardians,
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, we are currently living in a different world, trying to establish a “new normal.” Now that UCOH has gone virtual for the foreseeable future, we want to provide some online resources to support our children, teens and parents. We want to especially provide spiritual, social and emotional support, along with coping tools. As Mr. Rogers said, when something scary happens, tell the children to look for the helpers. We are their helpers!
Here is an article from the National Association of School Psychologists about how to talk to children about COVID-19:
We are currently working with our teachers to provide online Sunday School classes live, during the 11:25 adult services. We understand that some families may not have enough computers for our Youth Education classes to be held live at the same time as our adult services so we are considering moving the time to an hour earlier. Otherwise, there are some videos and other resources that children can access anytime they feel a need for reinforcement. To enable this, we have created a Facebook group for each age group. Click on the links below for your age groups and join each appropriate group.
If you prefer a different medium for your young children rather than a Facebook group, please let us know. Please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to let us know your preferences on how and when to reach your children.
So far, we have created a meditation video for our Toddlers/Unitots and Pre-K/Kinder classes. There is also a story about prayer in the Pre-K/Kinder group. Our elementary class is studying meditation this month and we have added a meditation to their page. More stories and videos will be added each week. These are currently setup to view at your convenience.
Our YOU and Uniteens will be interacting live with each other on Sunday mornings via Zoom. Send an email to email@example.com if your teen wants the link to participate in the Zoom call. Include an email and cell number for the teen. Also, check back often on the Facebook group pages for updates.
In addition, we are sharing weekly “Do at Home Lessons” provided by Unity Worldwide Ministries to download and use at home with your family. Lesson one is loaded onto the Facebook groups. Here is lesson two:
Below are some other very helpful resources for you and your children. As we identify additional resources, we will provide updates. In addition to the Facebook groups, you can check the “Youth and Family News” on our website for updates: https://www.unityhills.org/ministries/youth-and-family/youth-and-family-news/
The HeartMath Institute recently released a new and wonderful interactive program for young children, ages 4-10, to learn and practice the skill of shifting into coherence. It’s called HeartSmarts Adventure. They received a grant to make it available for free until the end of April. They are a nonprofit and this is part of their mission. Here is the link to register and download your copy. This link will be available on the Pre-K/Kinder and Elementary Facebook groups as well. https://www.heartmath.org/education/e-learning/heartsmarts-adventure/100k-coherent-kids-initiative/
Conscious Discipline Resources
We love Conscious Discipline, a fantastic resource for social emotional learning. It is an integral part of the functioning of our Youth Education program. Here are some of the resources they have made available for families:
FREE PRINTABLE SOCIAL STORY “WHY CAN’T I GO TO SCHOOL?”
Here’s a timely and specific free printable social story titled “Why Can’t I Go to School?” from ConsciousDiscipline Certified Instructor Abbi Kruse. Available in six languages, this helpful tool offers simple, age-appropriate language responding to this important question. Download now.
Here’s an article titled COVID-19: Five Helpful Responses for Families. In it, you’ll find practical suggestions that restore safety, build connection and create routines. In addition, there are lots of links to related free resources, including webinars, podcasts, printables and more.
Safety, connection, peace, calmness and tools for effective problem-solving are the most valuable things we can offer to each other as we navigate this life storm. We are all in this together, and together, we can successfully move through this with as much grace and ease as possible.
Take a deep breath, together we can handle this!
May Love, Peace & Grace Prevail,
Linda Hancock, CSE, LUT
Director of Youth & Family Ministry