Do you remember your school days as a child? Some immediately flashback to events that greatly enhanced their confidence, such as a track and field victory or doing especially well on an exam in a tough subject.
Others have less rosy memories. School can be intensely stressful for children and some are better able to handle this pressure than others. Most teachers will alert parents when they feel a child might be struggling, but it is important to regularly check in with your kids and find out how well they are coping.
If your child is having difficulty with stress at school, here are some suggestions that might help:
It is imperative for children to get a good night’s sleep. Lack of sufficient rest affects everything from mood to basic concentration. From ages 6 through 17, the recommended minimum is 8-10 hours per evening.
Scientists are still studying what represents a healthy amount of screen time for children per day. This can be especially tough for parents to police, particularly if children have their own cellphones. Basic rule: if your child’s screen use is compromising their ability to study and do homework, then you need to crack down. This can often produce high emotion on both sides, but it is a necessary step.
Adults can find meditation difficult to master, so it may be too much for a young child. However, there are alternative strategies, such as taking deep breaths, progressive muscle relaxation, and visualization.
Your kids no doubt love the top pop artists of the day, but it is also good to get them interested in music that is calmer and slower paced. Try playing some during meals or other family times.
Spending Time Together
The older children get, the less they want to spend time with their parents. But do your best to cultivate an open atmosphere where your child feels comfortable talking to you in detail about what is happening at school. That means also doing your part by listening attentively and offering suggestions and follow-up.