With schools in Singapore starting back again in June, children over the age of 2 are required to wear masks. One of the core values we hold strong at Shaws is raising resilient children. The teachers will be right there to support the children adapt to the changes. It is important that the children feel safe and secure, and that they are comfortable with the changes.
Here are some tips on how to make masks a little less strange, and more comfortable for children to wear.
Explain to your child why they need to wear a mask. You can do this with a story, like the one told by Ms Deborah from Shaws Preschool, Lorong Chuan Campus (link HERE), or Ms Julie from Shaws Preschool, Braddell Campus (link HERE). And let them ask all the questions they need to about wearing masks.
Prior to starting school, familiarise your child with wearing a mask. Put a mask on yourself and on your child and stand in front of a mirror. Show your child how you can still talk and smile with a mask on. One of the reasons children are not very comfortable with masks is that they cant see the friendly smiles and familiar expressions that make them feel safe. By showing them that the smiles and expressions are still there, just a little bit hidden under the masks, will help them understand.
Wear a mask around the house for a little while every day, so your child can get used to seeing you wearing a mask.
- Leave some masks around the house for your child to play with. This makes masks a more normal part of your child’s day and environment, rather than a strange object.
Pop a mask on some of your child’s favourite teddy bears or stuffed animals.
Choose a mask that is your child’s favourite colour or with your child’s favourite character to make the mask more fun to wear. Alternatively, draw on your child’s mask. Your child may wish to decorate their own mask. This gives your child a sense of ownership of the mask, and makes it fun!
Talk to your children about what to expect when they go to school. How everyone will be wearing masks.
At Shaws Preschool, in the week leading up to starting school, the teachers will be doing a few of the things above with the children during their Home Based Learning.
It is about preparing the children for the changes, and giving them the confidence that they can trust teachers to provide a safe and secure environment.