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Wednesday, March 22, 2023

Dealing with death and grief in school

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Andrea Hartinger
Image: Red Cross
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The regional hospice association has started a project “Hospice teaches” – project days in which schoolchildren deal with the topic of dying and death. Most recently, the elementary school in Ort im Innkreis used the offer for the fourth grade. The topic of dying, death and mourning had already been worked out by the religion teacher in the previous school years, according to hospice employee Andrea Hartinger, who was visiting with a colleague in Ort.

After an introduction, it was about memories of grandma and grandpa who have already passed away. “We also quickly realized how important it is for the children to be able to talk about their deceased,” says Hartinger. In order to approach the particularly difficult topic of saying goodbye to a loved one, a teaching tour to the graves of the deceased relatives was also planned. The local undertaker also supported the project. The children were able to take a close look at the hearse, and many questions arose, says Andrea Hartinger. “What do dead people wear? Has anyone ever been buried in sweatpants?”

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In her experience, children are very open to the topic. “We can expect and trust our children to deal with the subject of dying, death and grief if we accompany them well. But the most important thing is that we ourselves have good access to dying, death and grief.”

Source: Nachrichten

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