As a parent, I am sure many of you may feel overwhelmed right now about schools re-starting and your child attending classes. When you compound general anxiety parents feel nowadays and add anxiety today about the pandemic, about whether the schools will be ready to accept your child; will the teachers?No matter what, do not panic. Be optimistic about the upcoming change and remember, the first week of school is always an adjustment period for everyone.
Going back to school can be stressful for the whole family. Summer provides a needed break for everyone, however, with the lack of structure, it can wreak havoc when it comes back to returning to school.
The summer schedule and routine tends to be more relaxed and carefree. The different change in environment for your child, from summer to school can be a challenging transition. Although there is usually much excitement for what the new school year may bring, there is often some anxiety about the unknown, and this year the unknown is what probably brings on more stress to both parents and children. Nowadays, everyone will be experiencing more stress that is likely to come from the adjustments that everyone will need to make in this new world. As a parent, we can't control many aspects of the school year. What we can manage, however, is how we can help our child(ren) manage this adjustment.
So here are some things you might want to consider doing to ease the transition for everyone from vacation mode to school mode. And you can probably start by being prepared when transitioning back-to-school.
Start by ending lousy summer habits. It is easy to get into bad habits and hard to break out of them. Patterns such as staying up late, to unhealthy eating can be complicated to break. Start slowly, create a more structured meal plan and start incorporating healthier snacks to keep in the house, while purging the bad ones.
Next, hopefully you've completed your back to school shopping. But if you still have to complete some of them, whether you do it online or at the store, make sure you involve the kids in the decision-making and purchasing process.
Starts adjusting everyone's schedule away from summer-time to school-time. It will be quite challenging to go from going to sleep late and waking up mid-day, to suddenly shifting into school mood. So right now you should be implement a schedule as a way to get your children back into the habit of going to sleep at a designated time and waking up earlier. The goal is to help them readjust their evening and morning routine.
Very important. Keep your child in the loop. Let your child know what is new and what is changing. Make sure they understand that we're all living in a new environment right now that requires everyone to adjust. To help ease the anxiety of the unknown have a family meeting about how the new school year is going to look like. This is especially true if you have children entering kindergarten, middle school or high school for the first time.
So please, talk to your kids about when the school day will start and end, and the expectations for them for the first week. Allow your children an opportunity to voice their concerns about school.
One of the big challenges you will face is how to decrease your child's screen time slowly before school starts. Have a conversation about how the rules are now different, and they may not even have an allotted time for screens during the school week.
And most impotently, when it comes to back to school, parents are also concern about the safety of their children while they are at school. Be vigilant and review the safety protocols that the school has in place, ask questions if you don't understand. Have a conversation with your child about school safety protocols. Remember to remain calm when you are having this conversation.
The most important thing is to remember to be present and have a fun and successful school year.