Going back to school after a long holiday can bring on a lot of emotions for parents and children alike. These feelings can range from excitement to concern, or anxiety.
Here are a few ways to manage some of the stress you or your children may be feeling as schools reopens for a new session.
Reestablish A Routine
Help your kids create structure about going back with a school routine. Let your knowledge and experience what best helps your child during times of change and transition guide you.
You can use this template to create checklists that will help you and your child follow a routine:
- what needs to be done each day for school like getting up, eating breakfast, dressing
- what help does your child need from you to get ready?
- what they can do on their own? (Establish these together).
You might also need to adjust your own schedule to make transitioning back to school mode smoother. If you can’t in the mornings, arrange the evenings so you can give as much time as your child needs, especially during the first week.
Talk About Going Back to School
Most children deal with some level of stress or anxiety about school. They have insight into their school experiences, so find out what worries them by asking directly. Reassure your child that being nervous is natural – even for teachers. Let them know you can worry and still have courage.
To help your child cope with these feelings:
- Let them express their fears. Share stories of your own first-day jitters when you were a child.
- Teach them to breathe deeply and slowly to calm their nerves.
- Discuss the scenarios that worry them and rehearse solutions so they can be prepared.
- Set up a peer-buddy system or car pool where your kid can go to school with his/her peers
Look out for signs of stress
It can be a stressful time for children, readjusting to a new class and new people. Look out for these signs in your child so you don’t miss an opportunity to support them and help them feel less overwhelmed:
- is clingier than usual or tries to escape from the classroom
- appears restless and flighty or cries
- shows an increased desire to avoid activities through negotiations and deal-making
- tries to get out of going to school
- retreats to thumb sucking, baby language or increased attachment to favorite soft toys (for younger students).
Encourage your children to ask questions
Your children are going to have a lot of questions about the new session! What will be the same? What will be different? While many schools will provide necessary information, sometimes children want a different or more relatable answer. Ensure you’re available to answer any questions your children may have, and let them know nothing is off-limits to talk about.
If you have any questions you don’t have enough information about, you can always reach out to us on WhatsApp, Instagram, or Facebook.
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