Talking to Kids about COVID-19

Image with Text reading Talking to Kids About the New Coronavirus


two cartoon Caucasian parents and female child


  • Speak to them in a way they understand so they are not overwhelmed or frightened

  • Give simple reassurances so they know they are being kept safe

  • Reinforce control- remind them how they can be helpful by practicing sanitary habits

  • Model safe practices, empathy for those that are ill, and avoid using stereotypes

  • Observe media exposure and eliminate images that are frightening

  • Watch for anxious behavior such as being irritable, clingy, or distracted

  • Make time to talk, listen, and be open to questions and concerns

  • Provide accurate and honest information- share facts that are age and developmentally appropriate


two African American parents and male child


Discussion Questions one Caucasian mother and male child

What is COVID-19?

  • It is short for “coronavirus disease 2019” and is a new sickness that doctors and scientists are still learning about.

  • This virus has made some people sick, however, most will be ok, especially kids.

What can I do to not get sick from COVID-19?

  • Make sure to wash your hands before eating and after using the restroom.

  • Sing a song like “Happy Birthday” two times while washing your hands and follow the steps: lather-scrub-rinse-dry

  • If soap and water are not available have and adult help with using hand sanitizer.

  • Keep your hands away from your mouth, eyes and nose to keep germs out of your body.

  • Help clean things with adults such as surfaces, door knobs, TV remotes and toys.

What happens when you get sick with COVID-19?

  • It can look different for some people, some look like they have the flu while other get a little bit sick, or not at all.

  • Doctors see that kids do not get very sick, but adults can get more sick, and most of them get better.

  • If you become ill it does not mean you have COVID-19, it could be different kinds of germs and adults will help you get better.

Five children washing their hands



Last Updated May 15, 2020