Talking to Young Children About Earthquakes

I just finished assembling my son’s earthquake kit for kindergarten.  We’ve done a lot of earthquake/emergency planning at home, so this didn’t seem like a big deal.  But then I had to write him a note to include in his kit.  That’s when the reality of being separated from my children during a natural disaster really hit me.

The school sits on top of the Hayward fault – the likely cause of my writer’s block. We’ve all heard the warnings. The last five significant earthquakes on the Hayward fault have been about 140 years apart. And the last major one was…140 years ago. Knowing this, and the fact there’s a pretty good chance my son could be at school if there is a big earthquake, what’s the best way to reassure him?

I turned to the Red Cross’s Bay Area chapter and We Care Children’s Services, a local children’s mental health organization, for resources and advice.

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