It may not be possible to understand a tragedy like the shooting Friday in Newton, Conn., but parents can help their children cope with the fear and insecurity.
A number of resources are available.
Talking with Children about School Violence: Advice from the Lucy Daniels Center in North Carolina and tailored for children 11 years old or younger.
Talking to Kids about School Safety: Mental Health America also offers suggestions, along with a list of signs that indicate a child may need help.
Caring for Kids After Trauma, Disaster and Death: A Guide for Parents and Professionals: A report published by The New York Child Study Center (PDF).
Stopping School Violence: From The National Crime Prevention Council (PDF).
“Talking to Children About Violence: Tips for Parents and Teachers”: From the National Association of School Psychologists (PDF).
Talking to Children about Community Violence: advice from the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry.
National Institute of Mental Health: A free booklet that describes what parents can do to help children and adolescents cope with violence and disasters.
PBS Parents: Tools for talking with kids of all ages about these difficult stories.
National Child Traumatic Stress Network: More tools for parents in the aftermath of a traumatic event.
Helping Children Regain Their Emotional Safety After a Tragedy: A guide produced by Kidpower Teenpower Fullpower International.