Back to school…three words that provoke a number of emotions. How do you feel when you hear those words? Well it’s that time of year again, for some young people it’s the first time for others it’s the last. For adults a new year begins in January for young people it begins in September, a time to start fresh, revisit our goals, check-in to our emotions and revamp our mind-set. From one extreme to another the next 10 months can make or break a young person or family.
It’s very easy to get caught up in our children’s attainment, behaviours, appearance, manners, what their eating and often their feelings get over looked. Yet it’s feelings that play a major role in the outcome of your child. Encouraging daily emotional maintenance – “Self-beautydence” will keep your young person positive, happy and motivated.
From exam stress to pure excitement, one anxiety provoking situation to another. Here are a few tips to consider in your preparation for getting the best out of the year head. An important thing to remember is kids like and want routine sometimes without even recognising. Routine increases trust and security whilst helping them to make decisions, in the long run it reduces arguments and save time.
A few tips:
- For new school starters, do the school route beforehand.
- Do bus route beforehand. With and without your child. (After all you may not be there every day!)
- Apply for Oystercard 5-10years, 11-15’s, 16-17,’s and have spare just in case. (Apply online/ post office, school stamp needed for 11+).
- Always top-up Oystercard day before. (Just in case the machines not working on the day).
- Put Oystercard in the same secure place.
- Plan the morning to leave 15min earlier; your child does not need the added stress of being late or being in late register or detention.
- Get your child use to organising their clothes and packing their bag the night before.
- Check if school has any social events. (Breakfast club, piano etc…)
- Talk to other parents, get a ‘buddy-drop’ system going, to free up valuable time.
- Label clothes… book bag, hairbands, if enters school label it!
- Bed early. Sleep helps! (Tolerance, fatigue, retaining information, concentration, mood).
- Talk through concerns, act them out.
- Diary –plan/ time-manage your week, be sure to add, weekly family talks, homework and Fun.
- Role-play, “What if’s”, positively. E.g. “What if I get a lot of homework” (plan), “what if I don’t make friends” (role-play, let your child ask question in shops, place orders in restaurant, encourage them to speak up for themselves). “What if I can’t do it?” (Write out diary and add Practice time).
- Talk to your child’s teachers, introduce yourself.
- Normalise feelings (the feeling of “not knowing” makes us all nervous, most children will be feeling the same).
- Relax, take a breath, and don’t get caught up in negative thoughts.
- Get child used to problem solving their situations for the best outcome
- Learn how to say ‘No’ to ourselves (no, I will not get distracted) and others (no, let’s talk after class).
- Get your child into daily homework routine, (30mins – 1 hour daily), depending on age.
- Weekly check-in, (physical and emotional). It’s good to talk.
- If your child finds something difficult spending just 15 min a day will make a massive difference to their attainment.
Nicola Tenyue is a children’s Author, mother of twin girls, Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner and CEO of the ‘Chantelle Enterprise’. Tenyue’s main aim is to nurture self-development and build emotional resilience in young people and their parents from a young age, promoting whole body wellbeing.
Tenyue has published two books in her Chantelle series and has successful developed “DevelopingME”, a series of self-confidence and emotional resilience building workshops for young people delivered in schools, 1-2-1 and her NEW online workshop will be available for download soon at www.chantellebooks.com.
Tenyue says “A healthy self-confidence is something that should be encouraged from a young age, just like brushing 5-a-day teeth or eating you to reduce psychological discomfort and increase self-reliance, acting as the skills it should, helping us when dealing with challenges, achieving our goal and sustaining a healthy mindset in adulthood.