It’s hard to believe, but summer vacation has come and gone, leaving most of us in a back-to-school frenzy.
Anxiety is high during these first weeks and it is vital that both parents and kids take the necessary measures to ensure stress levels are kept under control. Anxious feelings about a new school year are quite normal, especially if things like starting at a new school, or first day of kindergarten are part of the picture.
Common worries include things like:
- Will I have any friends in my class?
- Are my clothes okay?
- Who will I sit with at lunch?
- Will my new teacher be nice?
- Will that kid continue to bully me?
- I forgot everything I learned last year!
Starting a school year can be super exciting, but also very stressful. For example, kids who are normally upset about leaving their parents will have a harder time adjusting to the new routine.
Signs of stress:
- Overly Emotional
- Headaches/Stomach Aches (This may be a sign they are trying to avoid school)
- Anything out of character should be taken into consideration
How you can help:
The days of late night ice-cream truck stops, Wonderland funnel cakes (do they still have those?), and cookies for breakfast are over. Nutrient dense foods, lots of greens, and low-sugar items should take over the menu. A healthy diet will drive a healthy mind, and should be high on the priority list. If you see a naturopath, look into some alternative remedies to calm nerves.
By listening to their worries with empathy you are validating their fears, but lifting them up at the same time. A lot of times, just letting them talk about their fears helps them, even if you don’t present a solution… sometimes they just want a good chat.
When a child is well rested they are much better prepared to face a day. Walking into a new school year, especially during that first week, is the hardest part, so a solid nights sleep is crucial. Get back into a healthy sleep pattern, and begin now so things are in check by day one.
Focus on the Positive
Talk over all the awesome things they are going to learn, and encourage them to discuss their hopes for he school year. Getting them excited for what’s to come is a great way to leave them feeling reassured, and optimistic.
Watch your Child
Not all kids are willing to divulge their worries, so pay attention to the signs listed above, and don’t hesitate to talk to teachers if you feel the need for concern- No one knows your child better than you do.
Tune in next week for some healthy lunch ideas!