Children’s Apps Which Help to Explain Death and Grief

Posted: 05/02/2018

It is appreciated that it can be extremely daunting to introduce the concept of death and even harder to explain the feelings that a person may feel when they experience grief to a child. Thanks to the digital age we are living in, one way of teaching your children about death and grief is through the media platform of apps, all of which can be downloaded on an iPhone, Android, iPad or other types of tablet.

Apps are great for educating children as they are interactive. Therefore, there is a sense of fun for the kids when engaging with educational content. There are apps for children which focus of learning the alphabet, learning colours and learning animals and their noises, for example. So, what would be so different about downloading an app to help to teach your child about death, grief and bereavement? It is something you can do with them so that if they have any questions or need clarification, you are there to answer or explain anything as well as provide comfort.

If you need help in how to broach the subject of death and grief or explaining funerals, we have guides packed with information to help you out.  We appreciate the subjects surrounding the death of a close family member or friend can be challenging where a child is concerned.

In this guide, we are looking at the top five apps out there which have been developed and heavily researched by specialist organisations, all of which may help a child you are responsible for or know to understand the concept of death and the emotions which are intertwined with it. These apps are perfect for a child to learn about life after the death of a loved one.

Child Bereavement UK

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The national charity Child Bereavement UK, which aims to support young people experiencing bereavement, have developed and launched an app for children 11+ who are going through grief after the death of a loved one or family member.

The app aims to tackle loneliness in young people following a death. It also encourages them to support other young people going through the same thing and can be used by teachers, professionals, family or friends in order to help a young person who is grieving.

The app cleverly features an in-build notepad so that users can freely express their thoughts and feelings as they happen. The app includes information about where to find help and support and helps you connect with other young people who are bereaved.

Smiles & Tears by Nelson’s Journey

An app which was kindly funded by the donations from BBC Children in Need, allows children to write their thoughts, feelings and emotions down, record memories and send virtual gifts to other children.

The Smiles & Tears app also outlines tips about who, as a child, to handle the emotions they may be experiencing such as anger, guilt, confusion, depression and loneliness.

Nino’s Mourning Toolbox

Nino’s Mourning Toolbox is targeted towards children ranging from 4 years old to 12 years old. The app takes children through a story of a dinosaur (Nino) and his journey after his sister has died. The story is interactive, which is great for a child’s learning being genuine. Nino takes users through the steps of his grieving process in order to help the users to overcome their own loss, and highlights the importance of family support.

The app invites children to take part in answering questions related to death, of course in a child friendly and creative way. Drawing, singing, speaking, thinking and listening and inventing their own things are all actives which are encouraged on the mobile app.

Lilies

The user-friendly mobile grief app called Lilies has been developed for the purposes of helping young people who have lost a loved one by providing endless virtual hugs. The app was actually created by six girls who were attending Stratford Grammar School located in Warwickshire. Their aim was to provide a safe space for children who were grieving to be part of an online community so that they could communicate freely with one another about their thoughts, feelings and emotions. The app also provides excellent tips on how to deal with grief on your own.

Winston’s Wish, a national bereavement organisation, supported the launch of the app by stating: “ The Lilies project team have created something very special with this app. They did something very few people do — stopped and thought about those children and young people who have experienced the death of someone close to them.”

Apart of Me

apart-of-me

The mobile gaming app, Apart of Me, was originally developed to help children find their feet after facing a tragic loss. It aims to provide children with resilience and strength of character when someone they love has died or is terminally ill.

The colourful app allows children to hold onto to memories of their loved ones by engaging in a vibrant virtual world.

When the app is initially opened, users are welcomed onto a peaceful, virtual island which is completely theirs to explore. Discovery is a huge part of the interaction, and as they discover, they unlock quizzes, quests and puzzles to complete. These have all been carefully created to educate children in an interactive way about death, bereavement and the overall emotional process alongside these.

As well as apps, children’s films which focus on the subject of death or loss can be a great way of helping any given child to understand what emotions they may experience when faced with it. To read our post on our top children’s films which can help a child to understand death and grief, click here.