Congratulations, your child is starting school! The first days of school are always hectic and hectic, whether they’re starting kindergarten, elementary school, or going back to school after the holidays. Although parents feel the peace of living in a more organized life and the pride of their children, who are now schooled, with their children starting school, they may also have concerns about how their children feel in this process and whether they will have problems.
Indeed, starting school for children is a very important development. School is the child’s first social environment outside the family. Here, a brand new environment, new friends, new experiences, many learning and development opportunities will be in front of them where they can improve themselves. On the other hand, they will be expected to take more responsibility and abide by certain rules in this process. It is quite normal for children to be worried at first and to have many questions in their minds when starting school life, where they will experience many new social and academic experiences. Because it can be worrying for children to leave the order they are used to until that day, to spend time away from home, to go out of the safe zone. Will they be able to find new friends? Who will be his classmates? What will his teachers be like, how will he treat himself? Are the lessons difficult? Will they no longer be allowed to play games, will they always have to do homework?
Although it is quite normal for children to have questions in their minds when they step into school life, too much anxiety can cause them to have adjustment problems related to school. In this respect, parents should be very careful and observe their children very well. As parents, you can share your child’s school excitement while minimizing their anxiety:
Chat with your child about school life: Try to answer their questions about school. Share comforting, beautiful memories of your own school life. Ask how he feels about the new school year. What are the things that make him happy, sad, worried? Show an understanding attitude. If he has a problem, explain that you will always be there for him, what he can do and that you trust him. In general, speak in a soothing tone by answering their curiosity.
Build a positive attitude about school: If you are excited about school, reading, writing, learning math, your child will be too. If you are anxious, your child will learn from you by observing that starting school is a worrying situation and will take an anxious attitude towards school. Your anxiety will surely reflect on your child. Yes, indeed, the school period is a period when the child leaves his/her family and has to deal with some situations alone. What your child needs most during this period is a sense of security. Children who are self-confident and can express their feelings and thoughts well have less problems in starting school. For this reason, it is very important to reassure, inform and comfort your child instead of reflecting your concerns.
Encourage them to socialize with their classmates: Try to arrange times for them to play outside of school with their classmates. Strong friendship ties will facilitate your child’s adaptation to school and reduce their anxiety.
Establish a regular schedule: Creating a good after-school schedule with appropriate and sufficient time for play and study will ensure that your child will have opportunities to both fulfill their school responsibilities and play. This will save you from having problems with doing homework in the long run.
Don’t compare: Telling other kids that you have high expectations for them will only make your child more anxious. Excessive anxiety will both break your child’s self-confidence and negatively affect his success. No comparison brings happiness. Every child is different and unique. While continuing to help with their shortcomings, be sure to praise the areas where your child is successful and do not neglect to support them for further development.
Be optimistic: Give the message that everyone can have problems at school, but that you believe your child can handle it and will be there when he needs it. Explain the importance of working and fulfilling the given responsibilities both with your actions and with your words. Being able to establish a positive outlook and the right study order at the beginning of the school term will help your child have a solid foundation in their academic life.
It’s normal for your child to have mixed feelings at the beginning of the school term. Be tolerant and patient with his feelings. Your positive approach and your confidence in him is very valuable to him. If your child has adaptation problems to school and refuses to go to school, get support from a specialist as soon as possible so that it does not turn into chronic school phobia.