A short story book is helping keiki deal with trauma from the Maui fires
HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - A short story book is helping keiki deal with trauma from the Maui fires.
Elizabeth Hartline, early childhood assistant professor from Honolulu Community College, joined HNN’s Sunrise Weekends to share how keiki can understand the Lahaina disaster through storytelling.
“This is what we call in early childhood social story, it’s a super common tool we use, to help children make sense of the world around them. Our brains really need language to understand what’s happening and social stories is just something we create to give them that language,” Hartline said.
“There was a fire: A story for young children on Maui “is a very simple story. It kinda just gives the framework, there was a fire, this is why it happened, you may feel sad, this is what sadness feel like, when you are sad you can ask a grown up for help,” Hartline added.
Some activities the book suggests are:
- Ask for a hug
- Draw a picture
- Cuddle a stuffed animal or a pet
- Take some deep breaths
- Play firefighter
- Play with play dough
- Go to the beach
- Help your family make a safety plan
Caregivers can also access tips and resources.
Hartline said the story was distributed in Maui Head Start preschool sites and various relief organizations.
“Caregivers can just print it out, but we are in conversations to publish it, to make it more accessible, to have it available for free at doctor’s offices, schools,” Hartline said.
Online copies of “There was a fire” can be found on the Early Childhood Action Strategy’s website (linked under Helping Young Children).
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