[Skip to Content]

Coronavirus: What Kids Can Do

Reviewed by: D'Arcy Lyness, PhD

With all the talk about coronavirus, you might be wondering what kids can do. Here are the 4 best ways everyone (including kids) can help stop coronavirus:

  • Wash your hands. Use soap and water. Wash for 20 seconds. You can count slowly to 20. Or you can sing the happy birthday song twice. Be sure to wash the tops of your hands, and between your fingers. Get your thumbs, and even your fingernails.

    Always wash your hands after you use the bathroom. Wash them whenever you come in from outside, before you eat, after you play with a pet. Wash your hands after you blow your nose, sneeze or cough.
  • Cover your sneeze or cough. Sneeze or cough into your elbow, not your hand. Then wash your hands anyway. It's always fun to drown a germ with soap and water!
  • Stay home. Schools and most other places are closed for now. Experts are asking people to stay home. When people stay at home and don't visit others, germs can't spread.
  • Cover your face and keep your distance. If you do go out, wear a cloth face covering (or face mask, if you have one). Kids younger than 2 years old shouldn't cover their faces. But everyone else should because this helps prevent the spread of the virus. It's also important to stay at least 6 feet away from people you don't live with when you're out in public. 

When you do these things, you're doing your part to stop coronavirus.

Washing hands isn't so hard. But it can be hard to stay home for now. It means not being with people you like to be with. And not going places you like to go.

So here are 3 more things kids can do. These things help you cope with stay-at-home time:

Notice your feelings. All the things you miss, like playdates, school trips, and sports can make you feel sad. But it won't be forever. For now, you can feel better if you stay in touch with people you miss. Talk on the phone or visit by video. You can draw pictures that show how you feel. Or talk about it with someone you feel close to.

Do things you enjoy. While you're waiting for this stay-at-home time to pass, do things to have fun. You can do fun things by yourself or with the people you live with.

When you're indoors, you can play games, read, do puzzles, make art, write a story, do a craft. You can dance, do yoga, build, learn, and play or listen to music. Go outside to ride bikes, run, walk, or hike. Take some chalk and write happy messages on trails and sidewalks for other people to see.

Be kind and helpful. All the change caused by coronavirus can make kids and adults feel stressed. Kids can help by doing little things that make a big difference.

Here are a few ideas:

  • Help take care of a little brother or sister. Keep them happy. Read to them and play with them.
  • Put your stuff away. Make your bed. Do your best with schoolwork. Ask (nicely) for help. Use kind words. Take your bath or shower without a fuss. Share. Offer to help with meals or cleanup.
  • Show love to your family. Give hugs. Help take care of your pet.

Be kind to yourself too. Relax. Get outside to play when you can. When you're kind and helpful, it's nice for others in your family. And it helps you feel good too.

Reviewed by: D'Arcy Lyness, PhD
Date reviewed: May 2020