While every child is unique, for many school-aged children going back to school can be a mix of emotions. This year might be especially hard for some since it could be their first time physically in a classroom or the first time in a long time.
COVID was a test to say the least for many parents who had to not only be a breadwinner and caregiver but also a teacher. While some parents might be shedding a tear or two as they drop their little one off for the first time at school, others are breathing a sigh of relief. When children have a change in routine or pass through a stressful situation their emotions can come out in unexpected ways. It is important to be understanding and patient during back to school season. Encourage your child to open up and speak about how they are feeling. Always be a listening
ear and support for your child.
Expect your child might be a littler nervous to meet new classmates and their teacher or overwhelmed by the big change they are going through. They might feel sad to leave mom or dad, but assure them that everything they feel is normal and everything will be okay. Your child might begin misbehaving and this isn’t because they are bad, but it might because they are having a hard time coping and expressing how they truly feel. Take this opportunity to work on your child’s emotional intelligence. Work on describing and identifying their feelings together and trying to pin point why or how they feel a certain way.
You still might have a thousand things left to do for back school such as back to school shopping, school registration, etc. but don’t forget about your child in the process. Include your child in as many decisions as possible such as choosing their backpack, folders, pens/pencils or their outfit for the first day of school. Try to focus on the exciting parts of going back to school such as
meeting or seeing friends or their favorite class or subject.
Personally my daughter has always been pretty excited for school since she began going when she only 9 months old. She doesn’t worry so much about being separated for mom or dad however, there are definitely some mornings she sheds a tear or two about going to school, stating she doesn’t want to go. Although it can be just as hard to convince her at pick-up time that it is time to go home. We work on deep breathing when we are overwhelmed and explain why she might be feeling a certain way.
If your child is especially nervous or anxious about school maybe try a
breathing story in the morning to help relax them, and don’t forget about a relaxing Storybook massage at bedtime too. Storybook has a wide variety of stories such as breathing stories, stories to teach emotional intelligence, and stories to help put them to sleep, all of which will help you this back to school season. Sleep is essential for back to school and learning. And never forget, if your
child sleeps better, so do you.