Talking to Kids about Change

Day 106 of coronavirus in France

Day 55 of enforced confinement

This weekend I experimented with a virtual coaching session for the kids in my church. I think the experiment went well from the kids’ side of things.

I told them in advance that they would need a computer, a worksheet printed out, a blank sheet to draw on and their favorite art medium. Also, our church is gifting The Adventure Bible to all participants who don’t already have one.

I had the oldest girl read aloud an inspirational passage from Hebrews for the group. We had a chat about change and why change is difficult.

I had them each draw the path of their life and illustrate all of the bumps in the road up until now, each change and transition and trauma that makes up their past.

The overwhelming majority said the hardest thing about this season is distance learning because parents learned the lessons differently and explain them differently and they’re stressed about whether they have really understood what they need to at this time.

Then I asked them to go back to their art projects and this time write in what emotion they felt at each change, excitement, sadness, fear, anger…

At this point you could see that “ah-ha” look in their eyes. Siblings were helping each other out, “You were definitely scared that time.” This mirroring is exactly what is supposed to happen. Family is a great tool to help kids label and process some of their accumulated grief.

Since parents weren’t present, I gave them an assignment to share the emotion labels with their families around the dinner table that night.

Then I concluded the rest of the time with the first chapter of a cartoon movie, that we will continue each week.

My Cami loved it. She asked if we could do this every night! A person really couldn’t ask for better feedback than that, so I’m calling it a success.

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