Talking to Your Kids During the Political Season
Community is key to our respective cultures, the amplification of our voices and the wellbeing of our families. Uplift is grateful for our strong network of community partners who support our families across these key areas. The strength of our communities has been and will continue to be tested and our community partners are committed to standing alongside our families during this time as we navigate the election, the aftermath and all that it means to our scholars.
Uplift is committed to providing parents the resources they need at home, and providing any needed support in the classroom to keep our scholars well-being a priority. See what we are doing and what you can do below, and check out our list of resources for more information.
Mental Health Supports Available to Uplift Scholars:
- Licensed Mental Health Professionals are available at every Uplift Education school for both in-person and virtual counseling appointments.
- Post-Election Classroom Visits: Social/Behavioral Counselors will pop into classrooms following election results to assess the emotional state of scholars and will lead classes in discussions, reflection and mindfulness activities as needed.
- Small group counseling will also be available for scholars who are interested in additional support opportunities.
Signs and Symptoms of Anxiety and Fear in Children and Adolescents.
- On-going feelings of worry and unease
- Trouble concentrating
- Muscle tension
- Trouble sleeping
- Panic attacks
How to Help Scholars Mitigate Fear
Never forget, students take their emotional cues from the adults they are around. Always model positivity, calm and a stable, re-assuring environment. The following tips can help:
- Provide Factual Information in a Reassuring Way. Answer questions honestly while providing re-assurance. It is important that students know they can trust you to tell them the truth about what is going on, while also not causing panic.
- Create Routines that Help Scholars Feel Safe. Structure is important and provides a sense of stability.
- Make Space to Listen to How Scholars are Feeling. Make space to ask how your students are feeling and respond. Let them know that your classroom is a safe space to be vulnerable and talk about feelings. Make it clear that you take this matter seriously and will not tolerate anyone shaming someone else for their feelings.
- Look for Signs of Anxiety or Emotional Distress. Knows the signs and symptoms of mental unwellness (listed above) and make referrals to the Counselor when you see them.
- Teach Coping Skills. Talk to students about ways they can express themselves and regulate their own emotions. It is also okay to share how you as an adult have been successful in this (e.g. reading, having quiet time, meditating, etc.). Practice those SEL skills.
- Focus on What is Controllable. Students take comfort in stability and control. Focus them on projects, assignments and routines that allow them freedom, choice and a sense of control.
- Encourage Positive Thinking and Mental Health Practices.
- Refer for Professional Help to the Social/Behavioral Counselor at Your School. Refer to the Social/Behavioral Counselor when you have concerns about a student’s mental health or well-being. These professionals are here to help.