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Helping Children Understand Death


Overview & Objectives

Parents often have questions about how much exposure children should have to a patient who is terminally ill or dying. This module contains a brief history of children and death from the past until the present. It reviews how much children understand about death at different ages and describes activities that may be helpful to children at different stages. Hospice aide tips are included if questions arise about how children can best be supported during this time. A section on how to prepare children as a patient gets closer to death is also included. This module contains the following learning objectives:

  • Review the history of children and death
  • Discuss issues regarding the exclusion of children in the dying process
  • Identify age groups and their understanding of death
  • Review preparing children for a loved one who is ill and dying
  • Discuss how hospice aides can help families with questions about children and death


  • Learning Module
  • Group Exercise:  Share Your Experience
  • Test Questions
  • Instructor Answer Key
  • Attendance Sheet
  • Evaluation Form
  • Certificate of Attendance