I came across this photo the other day. Take a look at it. This is a representation of how the pandemic has impacted children of all ages. Undoubtedly, this has affected their social, emotional, mental, and physical well-being. Looking at this photo, kindergartners, first graders, and second graders have never had a normal schooling experience. Current eighth graders, at the end of middle school, haven’t had a “normal” school year since the end of elementary school.
Samantha Pearlman, LMSW, is a school based therapist with Youth in Need. In St Louis, she works in both an elementary and middle school in the Parkway School District.
“The pandemic has significantly impacted children of all age groups. For example, younger children, like first graders, did not get the same socialization as they would have normally pre-pandemic. This has been very disruptive socially and emotionally.”
Samantha works with her students individually and in groups, which include a mindfulness, leadership, and friendship group, with each group focusing on social skills, conflict resolution, and communication.
One of her approaches in working with students? Samantha says that although it may seem silly, she plays a lot of games, “Games are not only fun, but they assist in bonding with peers and teach conflict resolution skills and teamwork.
Her advice to parents: If you see that your child is struggling, don’t hesitate to reach out. School based counselors and/or resources outside of school are available. There’s no harm seeking out support.
Dr. Lena Pearlman & Associates is a St Louis mental health therapy practice in Creve Coeur, Missouri. The practice has a team of mental health therapists who provide therapy and counseling services to kids, teens, adults, couples, and families. Dr. Lena Pearlman & Associates specializes in stress, anxiety, depression, relationships, and other mental health related issues and concerns. The practice can be reached by phone at: 314-942-1147, by email at: firstname.lastname@example.org