How do you explain the Capitol riots to children?

TULSA, Okla. — The riots at the U.S. Capitol will likely be remembered for years to come, but until it makes its way into history books, how does one explain what happened to children?

A guide worked on by a University of Tulsa professor looks to help parents and educators have those conversations.

Professor of Psychology Dr. Elana Newman helped put together the guide and says that conversation is key.

Newman says not talking about it could allow children to develop unnecessary fears.

“Not talking about it can make the event even more threatening in your child’s mind,” Newman says.

“Silence suggests that you may not know what to do or how to cope. Children may be forming misconceptions.”

She suggests that parents and educators ask children what they’ve seen and heard about the subject, and listen to how they’ve comprehended to determine how much of it might be misinformation or misconceptions.

FOX23′s Scott Martin asked Newman what she thinks people should let children watch as more protests and violence could come between now and the inauguration of Joe Biden:

“This question is a tough one since it is a family decision of course whether to watch the inauguration -I don’t know what will happen that day. It is a historical moment and in a democracy, children/teens and all citizens should be able to witness the peaceful installation of a new president. My inclination is that it would be a wonderful teachable moment to point out what peaceful protests mean in our country, the importance of the presidential role. Parents and Guardians, whether they voted for Biden or not, can demonstrate faith in the electoral process and understanding that in all elections there are winners and losers. If violence occurs, which I hope it will not, caretakers can condemn violence as it happens, describe steps of safety, express and model appropriate emotions etc.”

—  TU Professor of Psychology Dr. Elana Newman

Check out the guide in full here.