School vacation is the envy of all adults. Kids get to kick back, relax and basically live in a world where responsibilities are small and it is always playtime. Everyone loves a good break from the real world but for some children a break from structure can be challenging and returning to structure and school can be equally as challenging.
We talked to our child psychologist Sera about how to help your child prepare, here’s what she said:
Kids Might be Anxious About Going Back to School
Some kids can experience anxiety about going back to school and the closer they get to the first day back, the worse it gets. The anxieties can be about different issues; school-related issues, such as academic works, peer relationship, relationship with teachers, and so on. Although it is normal for kids to have worries, it is crucial for the parents to discuss the worries with your child. Even if their worries seems ridiculous don’t laugh, listen and make them feel like their feelings are valid. If you think these worries are overwhelming your child it might be worth seeing a counselor to work with you and your child.
All parents want their kids to do well, but unrealistic expectations may hinder academic performance and trigger their anxiety. Our kids are embedded in a culture driven by competition and perfectionism where success is defined by school performance. Most kids know consequences of getting bad grades. Knowing child’s learning strengths and challenges may help you in preparing their kids throughout new school year.
There are many psychological tests to determine your child’s strengths and weaknesses. Once you understand this you can help them manage their academics better to set themselves up for the best chance of success. Seek professional help if you are concerned about their performance in school.
A Good Night’s Sleep– Getting Back to a School Schedule
Your child’s physical health is just as important as their mental health in succeeding at school. A week or two before school, parents should start preparing their children for the upcoming transitions by starting school routines, such as a proper bed time. There is a direct
connection between quality and quantity of sleep and a child’s performance at school.
Make a Plan Together
It is important to discuss what the plan is for the year ahead. Meet their teacher, talk to your child about what they will learn that year. Talk about breaks you’ll take or other activities they’ll do after school. Help get the excited and feel prepared about the upcoming year. Kids often worry because they don’t know. Planning a year together will help kids open themselves up to their parents. You can also work to set expectations for the year ahead together. You might have goals for your child, but remember they have goals too– don’t forget to ask them what they want to do this year.
Get Professional Help If You Need It
Like any new activity, going to school can be hard to start, but it will become easy and fun.
Talking to your child and taking steps to ease his concerns may smooth the transition back to school. But if it doesn’t seem to help and it continues or gets even worse, you may want to seek some help for your children. Call or email us for an appointment with one of our child specialist.