A visual aid to teach kids about coronavirus

Image by P Tate from Pixabay

Dr. Todd Ward


NPR recently published a one-page “comic” of sorts to help kids understand coronavirus and best practices to prevent infection.

Those of you who work with kids as part of Applied Behavior Analysis  or related fields would recognize the comic as a visual support to aid the acquisition of daily living skills.  It falls somewhere between a task analysis and social story.

The comic is packed full of hand-illustrated graphics and begins with a few “Coronavirus Facts”.  For example, “corona” means “crown” which is what the virus looks like under a microscope.  Next, they cover basic symptoms, and how they can manifest in kids.  For example, “if kids do get the virus, it tends to be very mild…mild means not very strong, like mild salsa.”

Next, they walk through basic preventative measures of wearing a mask, social distancing, washing your hands, and avoiding touching your face.  One fun way they use for kids to understand social distancing is to imagine a Christmas tree between you and others.

Finally, the comic stresses the importance of talking to people if you have questions, and that lots of people are working to help you prevent infection.

For more information, and to download a free copy, please visit NPR.

Do you think this would be an effective tool for your learners?  Let us know in the comments below and be sure to subscribe to bSci21.org via email to receive the latest articles directly to your inbox!

Todd A. Ward, PhD, BCBA-D, LBA is a science writer, social philosopher, behavioral systems analyst, and the President and Founder of bSci21Media, LLC, which aims to connect behavioral science to the world in an engaging, non-academic way.  Dr. Ward received his PhD in behavior analysis from the University of Nevada, Reno under Dr. Ramona Houmanfar.  He has served as a Guest Associate Editor of the Journal of Organizational Behavior Management, and as an Editorial Board member of Behavior and Social Issues.  His publications follow a theme of behavioral systems analysis, organizational performance, theory & philosophy, and language & cognition.  He has also provided ABA services to children and adults with various developmental disabilities in day centers, in-home, residential, and school settings, and previously served as Faculty Director of Behavior Analysis Online at the University of North Texas.  Dr. Ward can be reached at [email protected]

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