Stress at school can affect any child at any age, whether due to upcoming tests or exams, homework, or just being in a classroom environment.
Yes, school can be stressful, but it’s not always bad. If your child feels a little stressed, it can be a good thing. It can encourage your child to work harder, perform better in those high-pressure situations and learn to adapt to high-pressure situations when they reach college, university or work.
However, too much stress can damage your child’s ability to perform well in school. It can affect their concentration and memory and lead to physical and mental health problems, creating a cycle of declining grades and a lack of confidence in themselves.
So, how can you help your child with stress from school?
Look for signs of school-related stress.
Has your child got any upcoming tests or homework deadlines? Maybe your child is complaining of headaches, stomachaches, dragging their feet when leaving the house for school, or just being reluctant to go to school. These are some signs that your child may be stressing about school that you may need to talk with your child and see how they’re doing and how you can help.
Prioritize tasks in and out of school
If your child has a lot going on with school, activities, clubs and groups, or responsibilities at home, sit down with them and jointly decide on the top priority tasks. Maybe for a little while, something can take a bit of a backseat until your child feels more comfortable with everything they’ve got going on and feels more on top of their situation.
Work hard, play hard.
Although your child may have a lot of things to get done for school, they must have a break too. If they’re involved in extracurricular activities or love sports, giving them the time to have a little fun can help reduce the risk of them burning out and working off any frustrations, reducing stress.
Have a routine
The simplest of things can help your child feel better about their stress. Having family time, whether it’s a family meal or movie night, can help your child feel relaxed and be more positive. Having a good bedtime routine to ensure your child gets enough sleep can help improve their mentality if they’re well-rested and feel energized to face the day. Simple everyday things that become a routine can help them prioritize what they need to do and give them something to look forward to and feel like they can unwind without feeling too much pressure.
Talk to their school teacher or counselor.
If your child is still feeling highly stressed, find out how they’re coping during school hours by making an appointment with their school teacher or counselor so you can get a better understanding of what your child’s stressing about, how you and their teacher can help your child both in school and at home. By doing this, your child can get supported and encouraged to do their best and maybe get some pressure taken off them.