Starting School after Break (Summer Vacation or long leave)
Why is it tough to be the new student in school? (top five psychological factors)?…
- Fear of unknown, we all know from own experience when we have minimal information about the situation it can be anxiety provoking and especially if someone have poor coping skills to deal with the situation.
- Children might feel rushed and pressured by the parents for preparation for school year. Parents due to shortage of time might try to do things quickly while children take their time and cannot get ready or think fast or organize them, can create anxiety.
- Student might have some bad experience in the past that can trigger anxiety or restless feeling. If they have, unpleasant experience of being bullied or mal treated at nursery or previous school can trigger fear of same treatment.
- Parents may be too busy to prepare the children or not prepare at all. Parents may not be able to understand starting new school or going back to school after few months spending unstructured time and then getting back to routine and face the new challenges in terms of homework attending classes being with same age children is stressful.
- Transition from fun activities of vacation time to responsibilities of school and expectations of homework and regularities of daily habits. During vacation time usually family have late sleeping time and fun activities like site seeing, travelling, visiting family friends is very relaxed time which will be different then starting school and going back to school day routines.
How can you cope with them? What advise can we give new students to cope and fit in?
- After a slow summer vacation time, school activities will be a change to busier schedule. So During the latter part of summer and before school opening if parents can help children to start preparing for school like collecting school supplies what is needed and also talking and may be role playing ( for younger children) about the school daily activities. Talking with them how they feel about going back to school? What re their questions or concerns once school is open? Listen carefully and try to answer as much as you can. Be supportive and help them relax don not put pressure or show you are anxious because of them going to school.
- If there are past experiences which is not good, talk to them and listen to them and try to address, ( Do not hesitate even if you need professional help)
- Improve communication with children. Teach them this is ok to talk about their difficulties and you are ready to listen and will not be judgmental.
- Follow the queues if they hint toward something, which is bothering them try to listen and talk about it, and answer honestly to the best of your knowledge if you do not know tell them you do not know.
Some of the students we spoke to said the pressures they faced include other students already being part of their own group. So it was difficult to be an outsider, which caused them to be self conscious. Some said they were teased for being new students.