A resource to teach those with special needs about Covid-19
The amount of health messages disseminated by the mainstream media in light of the Covid-19 situation can be overwhelming for children with special needs, said developmental paediatrician and epidemiologist Lim Hong Huay.
Speaking to The New Paper last week, the 48-year-old said the information can be complicated for children and adults with limited language ability.
"Things like wearing a mask are new habits to them (and) can be hard for them to pick up. Changes in routine can stress a child with special needs because it is routine that gives them security," added Dr Lim.
Together with her husband, infectious disease specialist Leong Hoe Nam, non-profit arts movement Superhero Me, Eden School and Lien Foundation, an educational resource package has been created to empower children and people with disabilities.
The package includes simplified videos and slides to help them develop self-care skills, and understand routine changes and protective measures.
Dr Lim is a mother of three children, ranging in age between 10 to 17. Two of them have high-functioning autism.
She said: "When they were young, I struggled a lot trying to teach them basic daily activities like washing their hands. I had this in mind when I made the deck of videos and slides.
"All the steps are simplified and easy for both adults and children to understand," she said.
Madam Nur Hidayah Shahrudin, 33, who was featured in the one of the three videos along with her twin boys Rizq Nawfal and Qays Naushad, both aged seven, said the videos can be a fun way for parents and caregivers to get children to learn proper hygiene habits.
In the video, Madam Hidayah, Rizq and Qays can be seen singing to the tune of Happy Birthday while learning the steps on how to wash their hands the proper way.
She said: "Parents can change it up and incorporate other songs of their choice. Make it fun and interactive, and children will definitely follow."
Ms Jean Loo, 35, co-founder of Superhero Me and early childhood development co-lead at Lien Foundation, said: "Covid-19 is not going away any time soon.
"I hope the content we've created can be a helpful tool to caregivers, educators and people with disabilities to better adapt to the situation."