Jayson Rodriguez Discusses Children’s Mental Health During the Pandemic on WOTC-11

By Gaan Akers, LPC, NCC | January 25, 2022

Jayson Rodriguez, Licensed Professional Counselor at Hillside, discusses children’s mental health during the pandemic.

Jayson goes on to say that your home pre-pandemic and post-pandemic is much different and should be adjusted to fit the new normal.

Teachers can’t always catch when a child is struggling with virtual learning and parents are balancing working from home and policing kids during remote learning. It’s encouraged for parents to ask questions, look for changes in behavior, emotions and feelings and consistently check in with them.

Examples of changes in behavior that parents should look for would be changes in mood, isolation, becoming easily angered, changes where they don’t want to do work anymore, etc.

Parents should talk to teachers and stay in contact with schools to stay connected about how their child is doing in school.

School provides social, academic and activity enrichment and parents are having to take on different ways to provide similar outlets for children that they’re missing by the challenges of virtual learning versus being in school.

You should also incorporate ‘brain breaks’. Feel out how they do, how long can they positively work before getting distracted. Take a quick walk, make a snack, etc.

Helpful Tips for Children’s Mental Health:

  • Time Management: Have consistent and clear schedules for school hours
  • Reduce distractions
  • Incorporate brain breaks
  • Schedule time to keep in touch with friends
  • Find the positive! Find the successes!

Check out the full interview here:


  • Hillside Clinical Education & Referral Relations Manager - Gaan has been working with children, adolescents, and families for over 10 years in various settings. In her current role, she provides education and training for mental health professionals, parents, and the community. She lives in Atlanta with her husband. In her free time, she enjoys reading, hiking, climbing, and cooking. She is a donut aficionado and a national park enthusiast!