Common colds are the main reason that children miss school. Each year in the United States, there are millions of cases of the common cold, and while adults average 2-3 colds per year, children can experience even more, according to the Center for Disease Control. If your child isn’t feeling well, staying home from school is a great way to help them recover, but it can also lead to missed school work.
In order to keep your child healthy and flu-free, make sure to:
Wash hands – Washing hands frequently with warm soap and water throughout the day is an easy and simple way to stay healthy. Have your child sing the ABC’s so they know how long to rinse.
Disinfect surfaces – By cleaning counters, door knobs, keyboards, cell phones, table tops, etc., you’re able to protect your child from harmful bacteria.
Cover mouth when coughing – Encourage your child to cover his/her face when coughing or sneezing. Be sure to disinfect after.
Avoid touching eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands –This is how viruses enter the body.
If your child exhibits signs of sickness, the following are good indicators he or she should stay home from school.
Temperature rises above 100.4 – If your child has a fever, make sure to have your childstay home from school and wait until your child has been fever free for 24 hours before returning to school or visiting others.
If your child has vomited in the last 24 hours – Always look for signs of dehydration and provide them with plenty of fluids.
Cold-like symptoms – If your child is coughing, has cold-like symptoms accompanied by a fever, or has shortness of breath, it is best to keep your child home.
If in fact your child does need to stay home, here are a few tips for your child to stay up-to-date on schoolwork while out sick.
Collect homework – Stopping by when the school bell rings to grab classroom assignments and homework is a great way to keep your child on top of lessons and assignments.
Work on problems – While it’s not a classroom, going through a lesson plan at home will help your child stay caught up and will set him or her up for success when the time comes to return to school.
Push your child to do what he or she can – While it is important to get plenty of rest in order to return to good health, try to communicate with your child regularly during sickness to determine what he/or she may feel up to doing. For example, your student may be able to catch up on some reading for school while lying in bed or on the couch, rather than watching a movie. This is a low energy, quiet activity that will still allow your child to lay low, but will also help prevent your child from feeling too behind when he or she returns to school.