While kids often experience back to school jitters, this year may prove a little tougher than most. With some children heading back to the classroom while others remain at home, kids may find themselves dealing with a few added stressors this fall.
Here are our top five tips for lessening back to school anxiety:
1. Talk It Out
There’s no denying that in light of COVID-19, the upcoming school year will look a little different. Even if your children aren’t showing any signs of back-to-school stress, just like you, they’re likely unsure of what to expect. Having a conversation about how they’re feeling and answering any questions they might have will help them feel validated and more secure.
2. Re-Establish a Routine
One or two weeks before school starts (if possible), start transitioning your kids into their new back-to-school routine. This should include going to bed and waking up on time during weekdays, picking their clothes out for the morning, eating at regular mealtimes etc.
- For children at home: Consider practicing logging on in the morning as well as taking designated breaks throughout the day
- For children headed back to school: Morning routines could include getting in the car or walking to/from the bus stop on time
3. Give Kids a Sense of Control
Whether it be letting them pick out a few new school supplies or selecting their favourite snack, allowing your children to make small decisions throughout the back-to-school process will give them a sense of control in these uncertain times (ultimately helping them feel less anxious). As an added bonus, this will also make going back a lot more fun.
Note: Be sure to stalk up on school essentials ahead of time to avoid any last-minute stress
4. Give Them the Lay of the Land Beforehand
A new school year is always stressful, especially in unfamiliar territory. If your children are transitioning back to the classroom at a new school, try to plan a visit ahead of time (if possible). In addition to touring the school, be sure to print any maps, schedules or school guides that may help boost their comfort level.
Students remaining at home may benefit from an introductory meeting with their teacher(s) (in addition to the schedules and guides mentioned above).
5. Practice Self-Care
We’re all susceptible to stress now and then. As a result, one of the most helpful things you can do for your kids is to teach them effective stress management techniques – such as deep breathing or meditation. Mental and physical exercises are also useful for relieving anxiety, i.e. encouraging them to think of their favourite things or squishing some play dough or slime. Equally important are regular sleep, as well as healthy eating and exercise habits.
The Terry Paranych Real Estate Group would like to wish all our Edmonton students a safe and happy school year! Have a fantastic 2020-2021!
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