When do kids go back to school? If only there were a concrete answer to that question. New York City is hoping students can return to physical classes in the fall, either full-time or in a hybrid form, but it’s not a sure bet. It all depends on the rate of infections in the city. So parents are left having to prepare for two scenarios. By now, we all know the preventive health measures for COVID, and schools are working in creating a safe school environment for all their students.
But what about our children's emotional health? Many of us have known somebody who’s gotten sick, are dealing with unemployment, or perhaps even lost someone during the previous months. Whatever the situation is, many children are feeling anxious and fearful about returning to school. In this blog post, we gather valuable and professional insights about your children's mental health and parenting, hoping this will help make the return to school a more mellow experience for you and your kids.
Talk to your children with anticipation.
Like adults, children get stressed, have fears, and can even feel ashamed of their emotions. Before starting the conversations, you need to remember that your kids will trust you with their feelings if they don't feel guilty or judge. Also, try not to be overwhelmed or look anxious when talking with them. Build a parent-child communication channel that lasts all semester. Remember that kids react differently depending on their age: ask more straightforward questions and be more active helping your small kids, and emphasize the strengths and show support to your older children.
Psychologist Bruce Ecker, Ph.D., emphasizes that accepting our child's feelings is vital for effective and soothing communication. Returning to school is a significant event during the pandemic, and all parents must consider the complexity in it. Your kids not only can be worried about getting sick, but they will also experience new routines at school, reintegration to the system, efforts to maintain or raise their scores, and even bullying. Please talk with your kids and accept their emotions, then help him build a coping method. Let your children know that it's normal to feel anxiety and be fearful while experiencing a rough transition like this.
Build coping tools
It’s natural for parents to solve all their kids' problems and make it all the better. This protecting style of parenting isn't always sustainable for the parents or healthy for the children. Ecker recommends a coping system like a talk from parents to show their kids how they can cope and manage their emotions independently. Calming thoughts and friendly chatting with friends are effective methods, and parents must encourage their practice (combined with excellent communication and support as mentioned above).
Check your kid’s medical condition.
Kids can also be part of the high-risk population, so every parent must check their children's medical condition and make sure all their flu shots are updated. A child may be anxious about the virus and knowing his current state of health can help create a strategy to take better care of him and find the right words to calm him down. "Your health is excellent" can be helpful soothing words for an anxious child.
We wish you a safe and calm return to school. Remember that if you want a professional disinfection service for your home, you can call eMaids of NYC. Book your service online.