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The world is scary, and I'm concerned with all my children see on the news. Any suggestions?

From Mrs. Pizzo's Workshop

A: News fatigue is a real phenomenon and children may experience it similar to adults.

WKAR's local producer and host of Morning Edition, Mary Ellen Pitney, presented on news fatigue in a recent staff meeting.

"News fatigue specifically describes the anxiety and exhaustion when overwhelmed by the news." Children often see as many images and news reports as adults especially now with devices being a huge source for learning and entertainment during social distancing.

"If a discussion arises around a news event, break big conversations in the news down for children in a way that is digestible. For example, after listening to a difficult news story, turn the radio down and have an open, honest conversation with children in a way that encourages compassion and understanding."

Allow children to ask questions and be okay with communicating a lack of knowledge or full understanding. Feel free to shut off devices when heightened anxiety is evidenced. Then most importantly, reassure children of your commitment to keep them safe and protected during these times and at all times. Remember, regardless the age, a hug goes a long, long way.

Mrs. Pizzo

visit Mrs. Pizzo's Workshop

Robin Pizzo leads the education outreach efforts of WKAR Public Media at Michigan State University, the PBS and NPR affiliate serving Michigan's capital region. Robin convenes partnerships and coordinates station initiatives such as WKAR Family and Ready to Learn to bring workshops, learning tools, and other resources into the community to help kids be resilient, lifelong learners.
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