It isn’t easy being young in today’s climate, especially when anxiety is involved. School can be a large trigger for stress, so it’s important to ease your kids into their new routine and to give them the support they need for success. There are many ways you can help to make this transition a smooth one for your children.
New Routine: As the new school year approaches, it’s wise to start adjusting your child’s schedule beforehand. If they have a bit of extra time to get used to a new sleep routine, they may experience less anxiety than they would with a sudden shift the night before school starts. To help them acclimate to their coming workload, you may suggest they start reading, either an upcoming school text or a book of their choice.
You can gently encourage your child to spend time with school friends if they have not seen any all summer, as this can give them something to look forward to while also preparing them for classes.
Organize and Plan for Success: Without a plan in place for work and without a sense of organization, your child may find their anxiety rising. To help them focus and give them a sense of order, start by going through their school items. If they know where things go and have the supplies to be successful, they may feel more relaxed about the transition to school. Allow them to pick some school supplies themselves, as this can foster a sense of excitement rather than anxiety. You might need to help them plan their schedule to keep things simple and organized. Remind them to go to bed at an earlier time to get more sleep. Exhaustion and stress often correlate, so make sure they get plenty of rest.
Transform Their Space: Having a dedicated place to do homework can go a long way to keeping kids from feeling overwhelmed. A corner desk is a great option for this space, especially if you have limited room. Your child’s desk should have enough storage to keep their supplies tidy, but also give them enough room to spread out their books and notes. Invest in a comfortable chair, so physical discomfort does not contribute to stress.
In today’s world, they will probably need a laptop for schoolwork, so get them one that is age appropriate. They also will need plenty of light, preferably natural lighting, but also give them lighting features of their choice for studying at night. Allowing your child to customize their space can reduce their stress and help them enjoy being in their study area.
Start the Morning with a Smile: Helping your child get a good start to their morning can make a world of difference. You can program their alarm to play music to wake them, rather than a blaring noise. Eating breakfast together is another way to gently encourage them, especially if the meal is eaten slowly, not inhaled because they have to leave in five minutes. Help them relieve stress by being prepared the night before and making sure their bags are packed and lunch is ready. This way, they won’t be rushed and feeling anxious in the morning, unsure if they will make it to school on time.
With the proper preparation, you may greatly improve your child’s experience when re-entering school. Anxiety is something many people deal with, and your child should not feel ashamed because they experience it. With the right organization and adjustment in their schedule, you may even make this transition one of fun and excitement.