How Can I support My Child Returning To School?
Although many students will be really looking forward to returning to school, there will be some who have concerns or are particularly anxious.
After such a long time away, it is perfectly normal to be apprehensive we will be doing our very best to support them as they return.
It would be incredibly helpful if you could pre-empt any problems by talking through the information on the website with them but you may like to also consider some of the points below to help prepare your child to return to school, as outlined by The Mental Health Foundation.
Different approaches might work better with different age groups.
Your child might have worries about returning to school. You can explore these and help them think of ways to manage them. Model coping strategies you use when feeling stressed, such as speaking with friends, doing regular exercise or using breathing techniques. If it applies, you could share your own worries about returning to work and ways you are managing.
Help your child return to their normal sleep routine in the days before school starts again.
Talk about school routines
Start to talk through the daily routine that they were once so familiar with – getting uniform and bag organised the night before.
Make yourself available as much as possible
Children may want to come and “debrief” but maybe not when you expect. Create space for talking in different ways, such as going on a walk or baking together – there may be less pressure in these circumstances than when sitting face-to-face.
Look at the positives
It might be helpful to talk about things the child is looking forward to: seeing their friends more often; doing their favourite subjects or seeing their favourite teachers. During assemblies in the last few weeks, Ms Wickson and our Progress and Wellbeing Coordinators have discussed how students should be thinking about what they have gained and how they have grown, not what they have lost.
For example, resilience, using technology to learn better, developing a new hobby such as baking. As a parent, if you could reinforce this message of growth, rather than loss, it will help your child integrate into school life more smoothly.