Pediatric Psychologist Creates Animated Series To Help Parents Explain COVID-19 To Children

Sunday, January 31st 2021, 5:22 pm
By: Anjelicia Bruton


A pediatric psychologist with OU Health is helping families cope with the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic with an animated show called “The Martin’s Family Dinner.”

Dr. Noel Jacobs with OU Health said it’s important to make sure children are not left in the dark about the importance of understanding the COVID-19 age.

The pandemic has changed everyone’s routines. For children, specifically, they may be spending more time at home, learning virtually and some may not even understand why.

“Children are on the receiving end of all the decisions adults make every day,” Dr. Jacobs said. “Children didn’t come up with the idea for how school works. Adults created that, so if adults are going to change it after kids get used to how school works, there needs to be some explanation that’s on their level.”

“The Martin’s Family Dinner” is centered around a family having open conversations at the dinner table.

Dr. Jacobs said he wanted to create dynamic characters relatable to children of all ages.

In the series, kids learn about the importance of washing your hands and the difficulties of balancing a social life and being safe.

“The goal is to give kids one place where they can hear for a few minutes the basics they need to know, like the fact that warm water and soap actually breaks apart the virus and we wanted to show that in simple ways and medically accurate ways,” Dr. Jacobs said. “In the case of Dax, the teenager giving up the kinds of social life that teenagers are used to and need is difficult.”

The show has two episodes released. Dr. Jacobs said he hopes to work on more to tackle more issues.