New Experiences Going to the Doctor
Even though children may have been going to the doctor since birth, there may come a time when a check-up becomes particularly upsetting. As children grow physically, they’re also growing in awareness of their own bodies and their ability to remember painful past experiences.
Children don't like to be probed and poked, especially when the probing and the poking happens unexpectedly. And they certainly don't like to have painful or uncomfortable things happening to them. Injections ("shots") hurt, if just for a moment, stethoscopes are often cold on a chest, and blood pressure cuffs can squeeze an arm tightly. Everyone is better able to manage if they're prepared by knowing what may hurt as well as what probably won’t hurt.
In this set of resources, we will focus on how you can help children work on using play to better understand feelings, develop imagination, and feel proud of themselves for facing a new experience.
Watch the videos about New Experiences and think about how you could use them as part of the classroom activity or throughout the year as children face new experiences such as a trip to the doctor.
Episode: Daniel Visits the Doctor
Daniel goes to the doctor for his regular checkup. Before his visit, he's feeling a little uneasy. Daniel and Mom Tiger talk, draw and play about some of the things that might happen at Dr. Anna's office. With Tigey and his homemade doctor book in hand, Daniel learns that it helps to talk with mom and Dr. Anna about what will happen. (11 minutes)×
Clip #1: Strategy Song: “When we do something new, let’s talk about what we’ll do.”×
Clip #2: Learn about one child’s experience when he goes to the doctor.×
Use these resources to further explore the topic of New Experiences in your classroom.
Share these resources with the families of your students, so they can continue the conversation at home.
Childhood is full of new experiences. Whether going to the doctor, traveling on an airplane, or visiting a relative’s house for the first time, talking about and planning for new experiences can help children manage their fears and expectations.