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As a new school year begins, it is normal to have some back-to-school jitters. Then add the stress that many are feeling as we continue to combat a worldwide pandemic. Walking into another school year of uncertainty can be frightening. Helping your kids discover, understand, and cope with the feelings they are having can be a challenge for some, especially if you as a parent have mixed feelings as well. As our kids begin their new school year here are a few tips on how you can help your kids manage their stress.

Observe your child’s behavior

Watch for potential signs of depression. Some might include serious mood changes, changes in their eating habits, abdominal pain, withdrawing or isolating themselves from loved ones or from activities they enjoy.

Have open communication

Frequent check-ins on how they are feeling are a great way to foster open communication. Giving your child the space to express their anxiety about school and validating their feelings will help keep the lines of communication honest between you and your child.

Avoid other stressors

Whether we realize it or not, our kids are always listening and watching our reactions and feelings about what is happening around us. Many times they are waiting to take their cue from us. Insert as much positivity into your daily conversation with them and around them.

Add fun

Kids want nothing more than to just be kids. Create an atmosphere of intentional fun into your week and weekends. Give your kids time and space to relax, unwind, and have fun.

 

[Here is a fun way to help you understand how your child is feeling about school starting back.]

Staff contributor

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