Waters Edge Counseling wants to give you 5 ways to help with back-to-school anxiety. With the start of the school year rapidly approaching, many students (and parents) are experiencing some stress at the thought of returning to the classroom. Because of our disrupted school schedules last year due to COVID, this may be the first time some kids have been in the classroom in almost a year.
Even without the complications that came with the pandemic, going back to school can be a stressful time. Waters Edge Counseling has some tips to help you and your child(ren) take some of the anxiety out of returning to school and make this the best school year yet.
5 Ways to Help with Back-to-School Anxiety
- A week or two before school, start getting your children ready for the upcoming school year. You can start by getting back to school year routines, such as set bedtimes and selecting the next day’s clothes.
Start Seeing Some Familiar Faces
- This may include setting up play dates with one or more familiar friends before school starts. Studies show that the presence of a familiar classmate during school transitions can help with children’s academic and emotional adjustment.
Get Acquainted with Your School
- You may want to visit the school before the school year begins. You can rehearse the drop-off or spend time on the playground. You may be able to go inside the classroom if the school is open to that. Have your child practice walking into class while you wait outside or down the hall. Usually at Meet the Teacher events, you can easily make this part of the day.
- Come up with a reward or a fun activity that your child can earn for separating from mom or dad to attend school.
Validate Your Child’s Feelings
- Acknowledge your child’s worry or anxiety by recognizing that, like any new activity, starting school can be a little hard but will soon become easy and fun.
What if you need extra support?
Now some back-to-school stress and/or anxiety is normal. But if your child is experiencing undue trauma at the thought of returning to school or if he or she does not seem to be settling in after a week or so, it may be the right time to talk to someone.
Lots of children, for example, display some separation anxiety from parents to attend school. However, tantrums when being separated, problems sleeping alone or refusal to attend activities without parents can suggest a problem requiring intervention.
We have many therapists at Waters Edge Counseling that work with children, and we can help your child with the transition back into the classroom. If you would like to give us a call and see if this is something that would help your child, please do! We are here to help.
Good luck to all our students, parents and teachers headed back to school next month! We wish you luck and hope this will be the best year yet.