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Helping Your Child Manage Back-To-School Stress

September 8, 2020

Whether on-campus or online, it is completely understandable for children to feel anxious and stressed about starting a new school year with unfamiliar teachers and unknown expectations. Being able to identify when children are struggling with stress and anxiety is essential for parents to help ensure that the back-to-school transition is a smooth one.

Some signs of stress and anxiety in children include:

  • Changes in eating or sleeping habits
  • Unexplained crying
  • Stomachaches
  • Being more clingy than usual
  • Quick to upset or anger
  • Expressing negative worries

Encourage open conversation with your child about what is worrying him or her. It’s healthy for parents to know how their child is feeling and what they are thinking. Validate their feelings by letting them know it’s natural to feel anxious and okay to be scared. Once a child identifies their fears or concerns, parents can acknowledge, accept, and empathize with those feelings and offer support.

Here are a few suggestions for parents to help children cope with back-to-school stress:

  1. Make sure your child is getting plenty of sleep, eating well-balanced meals, and staying physically active.
  2. Maintain structure and consistency in your child’s daily routine.
  3. Carve out family time each night so your child can spend time with you and tell you about his or her day
  4. Build some downtime into your child’s day so they can rest.
  5. Allow time for play and for getting children outdoors for fresh air.
  6. Have a system to keep schoolwork, papers, artwork, and supplies organized.

With parents’ support, children will ease smoothly into the new school year with the knowledge that they can make it through a challenge. This may help your child feel less afraid and more confident in tackling other challenges that may arise in the future.

For program or registration information, please call us at 410.312.5233.