Back to school: Parents & teachers talk about strategies for a smooth transition |31 January 2020
Last week marked the beginning of the new school year; an exciting time for many students, but also a time of transition which can be quite stressful for everyone involved including parents, teachers and the students themselves.
Seychelles NATION spoke to a few teachers and parents to obtain their advice on some ways that have proved beneficial in helping students settle back into school, while easing the stress.
Knowing what is expected of you as a parent and of your child is key to ensuring that the child is not being given conflicting information from you and from his / her teachers.
Parents should try their best to attend any meetings or information sessions, read notices at the school and read messages sent from the school, to remain knowledgeable and updated.
Explain what you want them to do
It is important to remove any uncertainty by being clear about your expectations, what you want your child to do or not do, about what is and what isn’t acceptable behaviour.
It is beneficial for children when their positive learning moments, whether at school or outside of school, are recognised by members of their family, as well as their friends and teachers at school.
Positive learning moments like doing well in an exam or even helping to make cookies in the kitchen at home can all be recognised by reminding children about them. This way, they can remember how good they felt when these happened and can look forward to more.
Have a routine
When there is no routine, children may have a hard time trying to adjust and this can affect their ability to transition smoothly back into what is required of them at school.
To prevent this, parents can put in place a structure / routine; for example, ensuring children go to bed and wake up at the same time.
Understand the causes of their stress
Listen carefully to children / students while they talk about what may be causing them any stress, and pay close attention to them to help you as a parent or a teacher in helping to guide them towards appropriate strategies.
Many parents wonder how they can encourage their child to take more of an interest in subjects they might not like or to perform better in certain areas. One strategy is to bring in elements of what they like into a subject they don’t like or are not performing well in.
For example, if a child does not like to read, and he/she is fond of animals, perhaps introducing the child to books about / relating to animals might make reading more enjoyable.
Both teachers and parents should support children / students by taking time to talk to them, to remind them to remain positive, to give them advice about how to manage things, including any difficulties that they may encounter in and out of the school environment.