Helping Your Child Adjust to Back-to-School

Whether your young child is attending preschool for the first time or returning to school, the transition period takes many factors into account. Here are some ways you can help your child have an easier back-to-school adjustment period.

Read books about back-to-school

Reading books together can help your child feel less anxious about going back to school. There are many good back-to-school books for children of all ages. These books will show children what they can expect, and help them feel that the new school environment doesn’t have to be scary. When reading these books, discuss your child's feelings, and respectfully and calmly address them.

Create a new routine

You can ease your child into their school-year routine during the first few days. You may want to create your school-days morning routine with small adjustments such as eating breakfast together at the same time each morning. This predictable back-to-school routine will remove one area of potential stress from your child’s life, and they can focus on other parts of their new school life with more confidence.

Practice the routine

Together, you and your child can practice their new routine. For example, you can walk or drive the route to school and back, pack their backpack, and prepare lunches or snacks. This can help your child familiarize themselves with the process and reduce their anxiety.

Some children need longer adjustment periods than others. Have open and honest conversations with your child in the first few weeks of school, and find ways you can help to make their new routine easier.

Team up with other parents

If you know other parents whose children will be classmates of yours, arranging a playdate can be a good way to help with the back-to-school transition. If your child already has friends in their class, you can hold a back-to-school party for them. These things can help your child feel less scared about who they will play with or talk to at school. As the days go by and your child makes new friends, be sure to include these children in regular playdates to help your child strengthen their friendships.

Be patient

Going back to school is a major adjustment for every child, and it may even take several weeks. Stay positive and supportive during this transition period. Discuss your child’s feelings and listen to their concerns. You can ask your child’s teacher for advice on handling this transitional time. Here are some other ways you can help your child adjust to going back to school.

Going back to school is an important event for children, and there are many emotions involved. With these tips, you can help your child get ready for back-to-school and help them adjust easier.