Children in quarantine – Instructions and suggestions for guardians

Many people find it difficult to stay away from friends and relatives because of quarantines. It may be even more difficult for children, especially young children, who do not fully understand the purpose of these measures.

Use the points below to build on, but adapt the wording to what you think the children understand. Note that children who normally move between homes should not do so during the child's quarantine or someone else´s in the home, as this may spread infection. Family situations vary and it may not be possible to avoid this, but every effort should be made to ensure that the child is in the same place with the same people during quarantine. The quarantine will come to an end and hopefully it will be possible to make up for the inequality in coexistence and stress between households after the quarantine ends.

 

Regarding homes where some need to quarantine but others do not:

  • If a part of the household is quarantined after a trip or is quarantined due to close contact with a case, the whole household does not need to quarantine and they may go to work or to school. A parent with a child in quarantine due to close contact with a case does not need to be registered in quarantine and does not need to go for screening. It is enough that the child is registered in quarantine and goes for testing.

 

Children, quarantine and testing after travelling:

  • Children born in 2005 and later are exempt from border measures due to COVID-19.

 

Points you can use to explain quarantine to children:

  • Now many are sick (in the world / in Iceland)

Depending on the circumstances, any of the following:

  • Because we were abroad, we may have met someone who was sick and need to take good care of ourselves and make sure no one gets sick after seeing us.
  • Because we met ____________ when he / she was getting sick, we need to take good care of ourselves and make sure no one gets sick after seeing us.
  • Because __________ must not get sick, we need to take good care of ourselves and make sure that no one in our home meets anyone who is sick (elective quarantine).

If applicable:

  • At home, everyone is healthy / strong. If we get sick, we may need to take measures to feel better (antipyretic painkillers such as paracetamol / ibuprofen), use our elbow if we need to sneeze or cough, throw tissue immediately in the trash and wash our hands well. Not hug anyone who is sick, and no one but ___________ while we are sick. Then we get better and soon everything will be good again.
  • OR At home, not everyone is as strong / equally strong. If we get sick, we need to be very careful not to go into the room _____________, use our elbow if we need to sneeze or cough, throw tissue immediately in the trash and wash our hands thoroughly. We must not hug anyone who is sick, and no one but ___________ while we are sick. We may need to take measures to feel better (antipyretic painkillers). If ___________ becomes very ill, he / she may need help from a doctor or hospital to feel better.
  • Many things are very strange these days because no one wants to get sick. Therefore, it is not possible to go to kindergarten / school / sports / work as usual and even though everyone is at home, it is not possible to do everything we want to do when we are on holiday. But you can still have fun and soon everything will be as it was before.

The following suggestions for recreation were sent from an imaginative mother in quarantine. Be sure to add your ideas and please share with others:

  • Consider time together as a gift, not a plight.
  • Enjoy good food. It is easy to shop online and have it sent to your front door, but if this is not possible, you will need help from friends and relatives with your shopping.
  • Ask someone to go to the library and pick up books and comics for the children. Wipe the books and put books / magazines in a bag 24 hours before returning them.
  • Ask someone to buy age appropriate puzzles / cards / games so everyone in the family can play together, this is a good change from watching the TV.
  • Let's all get together in regular home work out, it's so funny for kids to see adults excercise. RÚV, various internet providers and at least some school sports teachers have shared suggestions for exercises to do at home.
  • Change the linens and use our favorite bedding.
  • Allow the children choose the clothes for the parents in the morning.
  • Make a tent in the living room from tables, blankets and the like, prepare a packed lunch, pull out a headlight or flashlight and other equipment and camp out overnight.
  • Go for a refreshing walk to change surroundings and get out. Just stay 2 meters from others.
  • Go out in the yard or to the balcony if possible to play and to get some fresh air. Just stay 2 meters from others.

Parents/guardians also need to consider their own needs and try to spend quality time together or by themselves in these unusual and potentially frightening situations. Maybe now is the time to learn how to cook your favorite dish, paint from photos, organize your photo albums or watch that TV series that everyone has been admiring.

 

 


Fyrst birt 20.10.2020
Síðast uppfært 29.10.2021

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