Today was an historic day – the first COVID19 vaccine in Australia, with phase one of the national roll out to begin tomorrow. And do you know what we did in our family to mark the occasion? We baked a cake. Two cakes, in fact, one representing COVID19 and the other the vaccine.
Back in 2020 during our very first week of lockdown we coped with the rapidly spiralling situation, the uncertainty for the future and the general anxiety by baking COVID19 pattycakes/cupcakes. We also learned about viruses, transmission, the importance of washing hands and social distancing, the development of the smallpox vaccine and how vaccines work. I filled that first school-free week with a whole variety of activities focussed on learning about COVID19 and viruses in general. And I’m so glad I did. It made all the difference.
The world can, at times, be a big and scary place with unexpected twists and turns. Even for grown-ups. But especially for children. And in the long dark and uncertain night, knowledge is a candle. Understanding, accurate understanding is always the place to start. Even for children. Accurate information, pitched at the right developmental level with plenty of opportunities to process and consolidate understanding through play and creation, is exactly what children need. Especially in a crisis.
And if they get to eat their creations? Well, that’s even better.
The COVID19 pattycakes/cupcakes were our favourite part of that first week of lockdown. In our own little and ridiculous way, we came to understand the unfolding crisis better and we took control of our lives again. We made COVID19 into something concrete and understandable. So, it was so poignant for us to celebrate today’s milestone with another cake. And yes, it was delicious too.
Apply it in your life: How are you marking the world’s gradual climb back to normal? Don’t forget to pause to celebrate the milestones as they come.