How to talk to your children about violence

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The National Association of School Psychologists has advice for parents wanting information on how to talk to their children in the aftermath of tragedies like the one at STEM School Highlands Ranch on May 7.

“High-profile acts of violence, particularly in schools, can confuse and frighten children who may feel in danger or worry that their friends or loved-ones are at risk,” the organization says on its website. “They will look to adults for information and guidance on how to react. Parents and school personnel can help children feel safe by establishing a sense of normalcy and security and talking with them about their fears.”

The following is a brief summary of some of the organization’s tips for parents. More can be found at the National Association of School Psycologists.

• Reassure children that they are safe. 

Make time to talk. 

Keep your explanations developmentally appropriate.

Review safety procedures. 

Observe children’s emotional state. 

Limit television viewing of the traumatic events. 

• Maintain a normal routine. 

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