Returning to school can be exciting and filled with anxiety and worry, especially for parents if the child did not do well in the previous academic session. If the anxiety and worry are not controlled, it can lead to a severe mental issue that can impair the child’s academic performance in the new session.
To ensure the child is well-balanced in school, here are some mental health tips for returning to school, for parents, that can help the child navigate this transition and prioritize their mental well-being, which can positively impact academic performance.
8 Mental Health Tips For Returning To School
This article was written with from the perspective of parents who want to help their children’s mental health as they prepare to return to school. So below are some of the mental health tips for returning to school for parents:
1. Manage expectations
One of the mental health tips for returning to school is to manage expectations and set realistic goals. Remind them that it’s okay if things don’t go perfectly, and they should always be kind and patient with themselves.
A child who didn’t attain her expected grade last session may want to attain it in this new season, which can cause some form of anxiety that can further cause them to go down academically if not taken care of. Always remind them that it is okay if they do not meet the expected goal.
2. Stay organized
The child is usually free to play and sleep well during the holidays, and returning to school means adjusting to a new colander, and this, at first, can cause a lot of stress trying to adjust. Use planners, calendars, or digital tools for your child or teen to keep track of assignments, exams, and deadlines.
Being organized can alleviate stress and prevent last-minute rushes, which might produce anxiety and sadness. You can also teach the child how to use the various digital tools, planners, or calendars to stay organized independently.
3. Foster supportive friendships at schools
Supportive friendships play a positive role in boosting your child’s mental health. Encourage your child to make new friends; they can start by saying hello to at least one student in the school daily.
Also, teach them to accept rejection because not everybody they want to be friends with will be willing to make friends with them.
In choosing friends, help your child or teen to understand that a few deep friendships are worth more than a million surface friends.
This will keep them balanced as they try to make new friends without developing the feeling of inferiority complex.
4. Encourage open communication
Encourage your child to express their feelings about returning to school. Create an open, non-judgmental space for them to share their worries and excitement.
Ensure you pay close attention to your child’s concerns and emotions. Validate their feelings and let them know you’re there to support them.
If possible, visit the school before the first day to help familiarize your child with the environment. This can alleviate anxiety about the new setting.
Additionally, ensure your child has a quiet and comfortable space at home where they can unwind, do homework, or engage in relaxing activities.
5. Encourage hobbies
Support your child’s interests and hobbies. Engaging in activities they love can be a great source of joy and relaxation.
If your child is on the school’s sports team, ensure you are always in all his games to cheer him up. This makes him feel loved and keeps him happy.
6. Offer reassurance
Remind your child that they have your support and that you’re always there to listen and help when needed. Make them know that you are their biggest supporter. This helps to build their confidence and courage to face any obstacle in school.
7. Encourage them seek help if needed
Encourage your child to speak out without hesitation if they struggle with mental health. They should learn to talk to somebody elderly, possibly a school counselor, therapist, or a mental health professional.
8. Celebrate achievements
Your child or teen should be taught how to acknowledge and celebrate their accomplishments, no matter how small.
They mustn’t be at the top of the class before rewarding themselves. A small fruitful effort, even in extracurricular activity, should be rewarded. By rewarding themselves, they can boost your motivation and self-esteem.
Remember that everyone’s experience is unique, and finding strategies that work best for your child or teen is essential. If you find that their mental health challenges significantly impact their daily life, consider seeking professional help from a mental health expert.