Written by Feba Maryann 

The global pandemic had caused schools and colleges to rely on online platforms to impart education. However, now schools are slowly starting to reopen; your child may experience anxiety and difficulty in going back to school amidst the pandemic. Wearing masks, maintaining social distancing and changes in their daily routines could be stressful for your child.  

Your child may find it more demanding if they are going to attend school for the first time or attending a new school. The anxiety of being away from home, the sudden change in the pattern they are accustomed to, while additionally maintaining COVID safety protocols may be overwhelming for your child. 

In the rest of this article we are covering some important tips to help your child adjust to school. 

Show Them The Bright Side Of Things 

Going to school for the first time can be emotionally stressful and overwhelming for your child. By highlighting the opportunities such as sports, debate club, music club and other extracurricular activities, they may develop a positive outlook towards school. 

Kids who are moving to a new school may miss a lot about their previous schools including friends, teachers, coaches or clubs. Getting the school handbook and or visiting the school with your child may help them ease in. Some schools even assign buddies who will help your child during their first few days at school. 

Promote Bonding With The Teacher 

Being connected with an adult can help your child feel safe, since you can’t be around all the time, you need to ensure that your child shifts this emotional attachment to their teacher. Kids may otherwise feel too anxious to settle down and focus on learning. 

If your child still does not enjoy going to school or tend to dislike it contact the teacher immediately. You both can work together to take additional steps to make your child more comfortable in class. Experienced teachers will understand the situation at hand and put in more effort to help your child ease in. 

Promoting Friendships  

Your child may miss their friends from their old school or kindergarten, here is when you step in to tell them that there are potential friends everywhere. Enrolling them in summer camps or playing in the public playground or the local gaming arcade may create avenues for your child to meet new friends. 

Get in touch with their teacher to find out who they are close with in class or ask your child about it. Invite their friends from class for a playdate or pizza.  

Communicate Frankly 

Children may be anxious about things that adults can just blow off as silly or irrational, such as your death or something tragic happening to you. The pandemic will only create more such irrational thoughts in your child’s mind. So it is important that you address your child’s feelings and emotions and have open conversations about the same. 

Use logic and reasoning to deal with their anxieties, by asking them sensible questions about their fears you train them to deal with such irrational thoughts themselves. And if they are worrying about something that worries you too, like maybe their grandparents’ health or a missing pet, be frank in expressing your thoughts.  

The First Day of School 

Prepare for this day well in advance, you don’t want to wait until the first day to figure everything out. There are numerous things that could go wrong on the first day, your child may be anxious as they don’t know what to expect. Going on a trial run could be a great way to reduce this anxiety. You could maybe drive them to the school or walk them till the bus stop, if your child is going to school with friends, try to get them on the trial run as well.  

Attending any induction events the school organises will also be a great way for you to meet your child’s teachers and get a general idea about the school. Stock up on the appropriate supplies your child will need for school. Do not leave out the arrangement for lunch from your to-do list for the day.  

Finally on the first day, accompany your child to school and help them ease their way in. Help them locate their classrooms and teachers.