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Label: covid19

Article “We accompany with the person that we are”, F. Javier Romeo, for the initiative “Renewing from within”

Portada del artículo "Acompañamos con la persona que somos" de F. Javier RomeoThe pandemic has brought us many difficult things, and I wish it hadn't happened. And even so we can use their symbols to have a greater awareness about our way of being with children, and adolescents who have suffered much, as is the case with those who live with protection measures.

The initiative “Renewing from within”, from which we already talked about its launch in May 2021, aims to offer some ideas to continue reflecting on the protection system in Spain (and can also be used for many other places). My contribution this month is article “We accompany with the person that we are”, in which I offer a series of analogies between measures against COVID-19 and the awareness we need when dealing with children, girls and adolescents with protection measures. It is aimed at professionals and families of all kinds (originally, cozy, adoptivas…).

You can read the article in the blog of “Renewing from within”, from where you can also download it in PDF.

And I would love to know if those metaphors serve you, or how would you raise them from your point of view. I will read you carefully.

F. Javier Romeo

“Emotional intelligence in the face of the pandemic”, presentation by Pepa Horno at the International Congress of Children in Mexico

Exhibition “Emotional intelligence in the face of the pandemic” provided by Pepa Horno Goicoechea under the “International Children's Congress: parenting and pandemic” organized by the Mexican Network of Child Friendly Cities.

Date: Friday 6 November 2020, 12:00 of Zapopán, Jalisco, Mexico (19:00 from Palma de Mallorca, Spain) [see other time zones here].

Place: online.

More information and registration:

[Original Entry 4 November 2020, updated 6 November 2020, date of the online event].



“Raising to tribe, grow network”, Pepa Horno online conference organized by BBK Family on 29 September 2020

Videoconference “Raising to tribe, grow network: the affective network as the key to integrating uncertainty”, provided by Pepa Horno and organized by BBK Family.

Date: Tuesday, 29 September 2020, the 18:00 a 19:30 (Bilbao time).

Free entry online. To reserve a ticket sign up on the BBK Family website.

[Original Entry 15 September 2020, updated 1 October 2020, date of publication of the event online].

You can see the full conference in the following youtube video:

How to accompany fragility after confinement by COVID-19

During these months of the health emergency situation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, from Espirales CI we have tried to contribute from what we know how to do. We have been trying to answer the demand for emotional support, supervision and advice of professional teams working with children, girls and adolescents in the field of protection, in social and educational services mainly. Addition, We have maintained emotional support on a personal and therapeutic level at the individual level.

Throughout all this time reflections have emerged that we have shared in our personal spaces, so much Pepa Horno and your personal blog as F. Javier Romeo on his blog More Authentic Connection. But as often happens in our journey, the personal meets the professional, so we do not want to start the summer holidays without sharing in this space some of those reflections that have everything to do with the design and planning of measures that will be necessary to accompany the children, girls and teenagers in autumn.

The first reflection is that we will be wrong if we try to return to life and the pre-COVID-19 world. Not only because it is impossible, the world has changed in a significant way that does not allow return or oblivion. But because it can be destructive. There are some learnings that this pandemic has brought that we should not forget and that impel us to transform us. But, we perceive that both on a personal level, As socially and institutionally, measures are being developed in many cases from a provisional approach while awaiting the vaccine that allows us to return to the world we had. And we think it's a mistake.

COVID-19 has made us aware of our vulnerability. We were always vulnerable, but we lived with our backs to it from an experience of omnipotence generated by the false sense of control. We believed that we controlled our lives, and that the world worked by rules that if we followed them things would fit. But, a virus has been able to lay down our lives “upside down” and demonstrate the fragility of the social system, economic and institutional that we had built. Vulnerability, and the fear that comes with it, have become evidence. And we are not yet able to measure the consequences of that change at the social and institutional level. We should not be so naive to think that this experience is not going to transform social relations, individual decision making, the state of people's mental and affective health as well as political and institutional decisions.

The second reflection would imply some keys that are necessary for this transformation at a professional and institutional level.:

1. We need generate flexible structures. COVID-19 has forced us for the first time to work globally in a pandemic situation, of emergency. If effective interventions in an emergency situation are characterized by something, it is their flexibility. We have to maintain that criterion and generate structures, Projects, spaces that are flexible, easy to modify and adapt to different situations and populations. And this applies from the construction and its materials (How about if you look at architecture that can move and transform?), to physical spaces (open, with flexibility in its use, that allow movement…), to the design of programs and interventions in any workplace (programs that include internal transformation mechanisms), to working models (the face-to-face, telework, the connections, and so on.) or to vocational training (stop considering specialized training as the ultimate goal and move on to considering more general profiles as necessary that can maintain a global vision, as it happens with the specialty of internal medicine within the medical field).

Let's look at a clear example that is being debated a lot right now: the school. The measures that are being considered right now have to do with how to continue doing what was being done but implementing the security measures that were contemplated. That's impossible. We have to transform education. School spaces, make them open and modular, forgetting the classroom; work methodologies implementing once and for all project education throughout the educational cycle; open spaces that facilitate integration into nature and not cement in patios. It's about thinking of a different school in many ways. Not in the same school that we had, only guaranteeing social distance. If we have learned anything about school thanks to COVID-19 it is to see it as what it always was and in many cases we had forgotten: a protective structure, that generates equity and social integration, in addition to learning. Education and social distance are not compatible because the basis of the educational process is the human relationship, both between those who educate and the boys and girls and between themselves. And we are not only talking about the role of sensorimotor development and physical contact in nursery schools but about all educational cycles.

2. We need see provisionality as one of the few sure constants. We can't continue planning projects, immovable structures or plans. Children, girls and adolescents must learn to move physically, to change geographic location, From home, life, like adults to change jobs or residency. The post-COVID-19 world makes permanence very difficult. Our generations were educated to follow a long term, to plan your life (and we're not just talking about mortgages, but about work and personal life) and to measure progress through consumer capacity. None of these criteria will be criteria of success in the post-COVID-19 world.. It's about teaching how to flow, to change, not to hold onto possessions or places. And it will cost us a lot, because we were educated to the contrary, especially here in Europe.

3. We need back to small. In all senses and realities. Small places, small structures, small groups, small organizations. We are not only thinking about things that have been discussed a lot these days, like the need to transform big cities, shopping malls or massive entertainment venues due to the dangers they may entail. We think about operating structures, social intervention projects, health, educational, coexistence structures and many other issues. For us, one of the key lessons that COVID-19 leaves us in a very literal way is that only the small is sustainable. Returning to the example of the school, let's think about schools of 1200 students or in schools 300, four lines or one. But let's think about work teams where when the decision levels are very complex, the effectiveness of any measure is lost as well as slowing down and institutionalizing. The “little” it has many vertices, many faces, many things we could talk about at this point.

4. And last but not least, we need strengthen the community. A society is articulated around three levels: the individual, the community and the system. In the different continents social structures have developed that prioritize one or two of their levels, missing the third. In some countries the community and the system prevail, there where it exists, about the individual. In other countries it survives from the community and the individual because social systems are weak and vulnerable. In our reality, where we could include Europe and North America the individual and the system are prioritized losing the community. And the community has an essential protective role that always arises in crisis or emergency situations. When people have a strong emotional network, they are less likely to fall into situations of social exclusion or economic vulnerability. When societies have effective community participation structures, neighborhoods and cities are humanized and transformed. The affective network is one of the non-negotiable conditions of the protection of the individual that cannot be sustained only from the system. And that affective network is strengthened and established in the community. The post-COVID-19 world forces us to look towards the communities where we live: from changing the nuclear family model recovering the role of the extended family to incorporating community participation structures at any level of institutional intervention.

Sure there are many more elements, but for us from Espirales CI these are constitutive elements that must be present in any organizational or institutional decision that is made in these months. With them we want to finish this series of inputs which include the different materials, resources and videos that we have created for different contexts of intervention (education, protection, social services) as geographic (Spain, Latin America). We hope we have achieved our purpose that was none other than to accompany the professionals who work with children, girls and adolescents and their families.

A big hug,

Pepa Horno and F. Javier Romeo

F's videos. Javier Romeo “The three intelligences and sadness” in Spanish, French and Moroccan Arabic

Now closing the revitalization of the Blog “UNICEF with protection centers” during the COVID-19 health emergency we concluded the videos for children, and adolescents (especially for those who live in protection centers) with this last batch.

In first video we explore our three intelligences and how to use them to better manage rabies and second video we saw how to use the three intelligences to better relate to our fears, which were the most prominent emotions then. In third video we focus on something very necessary after all we have lived: learn to ask for help better.

In this fourth batch of videos we become aware of sadness, and how to use the three intelligences to better manage it. Why, curiously, Now that fear for the health emergency is decreasing, sadness begins for all the losses. Loss of persons, who have died or disappeared from daily life. Loss of situations, how to go to the educational center, the times with friends and families and leisure spaces. And also missed opportunities, from the experiences that allow development, like education, relationships and leisure.

There is a temptation to pretend that nothing has happened. But what has happened, has passed, and we need to assimilate it little by little. We need to give ourselves time to go through sadness.

In this video aimed at children, and adolescents, we explore the use of the three intelligences seen in the previous videos to better manage sadness. With seven keys and a reminder of the importance of asking for help, it will be possible that we take advantage of the sadness to value what we have in each moment.

Here is the video in Spanish:

Here is the video in French:

And here is the video in Moroccan Arabic:

With hope and awareness,

F. Javier Romeo and Pepa Horno

Article “Rest the soul”, by Pepa Horno for BBK Family

After everything we have experienced during the health emergency, it is important that we rest.

At Espirales Consultoría de Infancia we have been collaborating with the programa BKK Family they coordinate Bidegintza and EDE Foundation (among other issues, with these videos about conscious parenting, with these public workshops who taught F. Javier Romeo or with this video about “Living outdoors” at the beginning of the coronavirus health emergency).

This time they asked me for an article about this different summer, and my fundamental message is its title: we need “Rest the soul”.

I hope that Article you like it and it helps you find moments of rest,

Pepa Horno

F's videos. Javier Romeo “The three intelligences and ask for help” in Spanish, French and Moroccan Arabic

Here we have one more delivery included in the revitalization of the Blog “UNICEF with protection centers” during the health emergency by COVID-19 with a new batch of videos for children, and adolescents (especially for those who live in protection centers).

In first video we learned about our three intelligences and how to use them to better manage rabies, and second video we explore how to use the three intelligences to better relate to our fears. In this third video we focus on something fundamental after all we have lived: learn to ask for help better. Most of us have had a hard time during confinement, and children, girls and teenagers too. And now that there is more relationship, it's time to ask for help, from people close or far, to be able to solve what has appeared in this time and to be able to live with accompaniment the different experiences.

They are designed to be seen with children, girls and adolescents and being able to ask them questions like “Do you need any help from me that I haven't seen in this time??”, “Who else could you ask for help?”, “What other ways to ask for help can you think of??”.

Here is the video in Spanish:

Here is the video in French:

And here is the video in Moroccan Arabic:

With hope and awareness,

F. Javier Romeo and Pepa Horno

With “C” the “school”: creativity, community, awareness and warmth

Today I had the honor of participating in a virtual round table organized by the Early Childhood Education Advisors of the Cantabria Teachers' Centers. With the title “The return to the classrooms in Early Childhood Education: complementary looks”, we have gathered professionals in the field of pediatrics (Maria Jesus Cabero), The education (David Altimir), children's rights (Nacho guadix) and psychology (that have been assigned to me). It's been two hours that I've really enjoyed, seeing how the different perspectives are necessary to guarantee that the return of the boys and girls of Early Childhood Education return to the classrooms safely (not to education, because most have received continuous educational support from the teaching teams).

When we have been invited to close, three words have come to mind, that in the end there have been four. And all four start with “C”, as “school”.

Creativity. If the Early Childhood Education teams are characterized by something, it is their imagination, for their ability to create new resources that adapt, moment by moment to the needs of the children with whom they work. It's time to continue on this path even more: how to combine health security with emotional security, how to organize spaces and relationships, how to face the different challenges… That is why it is necessary to continue thinking and rethinking each measure, but alone is not enough, it will be essential to have the second element.

Community. Each person has our strengths and our strengths, and our professions too. So we will need to have different views, with the creativity of other points of view to tackle the challenges that lie ahead. In the case of Early Childhood Education, educational teams are already used to collaboration between teachers, and now it will be very practical to structurally incorporate other voices. On the one hand, families, which are always the first affective reference of boys and girls and that, also, have been co-facilitators of education and learning during confinement. On the other hand, other professional teams, from the fields of health and social services, but also from leisure and free time, or artistic activities. And you can't miss the boys and girls themselves. Participation is not just a right and one of the pillars of the Convention on the Rights of the Child. My professional experience (and personal) is that, when we ask children about the issues that affect them, they can give us much-needed visions and innovative and simple solutions at the same time. When we have all these looks, not only will we feel better with the accompaniment, but we will give more effective and satisfactory answers for all parties.

Consciousness. We are in a new time, living experiences for which we have no close references. In extraordinary situations we will see extraordinary reactions. Anger, fear or sadness will appear in boys and girls with very varied forms, and also within us. We need awareness to navigate them, and much of the work with children will consist of helping them to also learn to navigate with the accompaniment of adults who love and care for them.. (I leave some links to videos that we have prepared from Espirales Consultoría de Infancia for UNICEF Spain, on our three intelligences and how to use them to better manage rabies, the how to use them to better relate to our fears, or how to ask for help, soon). Knowing that there are going to be boys and girls who are going to return to the classrooms with fear in their hearts means that we have to use our utmost conscience to take care of the last element.

Warmth. The first ties in the lives of boys and girls are marked by warmth (or for lack of it), also with their teachers. This is well known by the Early Childhood Education educational teams, who find ways to make boys and girls feel accepted and loved in their schools. After all these months, and with the emotional cold that they can carry settled in their bodies, boys and girls are going to need all the warmth that their teachers can give them, combining creativity with health security. That must be one of the main objectives at all times., but now even more if possible.

I hope these ideas inspire you to find your own way of being with children, and adolescents.

With hope and awareness,

F. Javier Romeo

“Notebook for post-confinement action” from UNICEF Spain

Confinement due to the coronavirus health emergency has been a very difficult experience for children, and adolescents, for their families and for the professional teams that accompany them in their life and development. Now that sanitary measures are being relaxed and that a return to “new normal”, it is necessary to take into account the different aspects that affect them.

UNICEF Spain, from its Child Friendly Cities program, have published the Notebook for post-confinement action. Measures for creating protective care and recreation environments for children and adolescents to approach the new reality from a rights perspective for each child, girl and teenager. It is an honor that the methodology of “Safe and protective environments” that we have developed since Spiral Consulting Children, and that they have also invited us to collaborate in their application to spaces where children, girls and teenagers are going to start attending.

The document is briefly explained also in this blog post from Child Friendly Cities, in which the basic criteria for children to be briefly presented, girls and adolescents can attend public and shared spaces with security, not only physical and sanitary, but also on an emotional level. For this, it is essential to have professionals who know how to relate emotionally in these situations, and with special attention to participation, to the children, girls and adolescents can receive the listening they need to tell their experiences and concerns and to propose their ideas and solutions.

We hope you find of interest, especially to those who work from the municipal level, in spaces for the attention of children and young people, but also to families, so you can value the spaces to which you take your sons and daughters.

With hope and awareness,

F. Javier Romeo and Pepa Horno

F's videos. Javier Romeo “The three intelligences and fear” in Spanish, French and Moroccan Arabic

Continuing with the revitalization of Blog “UNICEF with protection centers” during the health emergency by COVID-19, we continue with the videos for children, girls and adolescents living in protection centers. In this second video F. Javier Romeo explores how to use the three intelligences presented in the first video also to better manage fear, with six practical proposals.

Here is the video in Spanish (Castilian):

Here is the video in French:

Here is the video in Moroccan Arabic (Tangier-Tetouan dialect):

We hope you find them useful to talk to children, girls and adolescents of their fears and worries, both with regard to health, studies or social life.

With hope and awareness,

F. Javier Romeo and Pepa Horno

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