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Coping Strategies to Help Your Child Get Through the First Day Back to School

Tips and strategies to help your student manage back-to-school jitters.

While the first day of school is likely one that is met with nervous anticipation and anxiety for many, children with learning differences, ADHD, or behavioral disorders may struggle more with this important milestone. There are ways to help make the transition gentler on the child and easier on you as you prepare to send them out the door to school.

Here are some tips to help your child transition to the school year ahead.

Foster Familiarity Before School Starts

Familiarity fosters enthusiasm — particularly among children who struggle. Visit the school, send a note to the teacher and encourage kids to reach out and connect with other pupils in their class to help make the first day more familiar and less scary. Having acquaintances and friends in the classroom may make children more inclined to want to leave the comfort of home and go to school.

Start Their Day Out Right

Try gentle awakening, using light touch and natural sunlight to get your child ready for the day ahead. Be sure to allow time for breakfast and other morning activities without the stress of rushing whenever possible.

A Little Organization Goes a Long Way

Organization can make adapting to school much easier for both children and the rest of the family. Try to get whatever you can done the night before, from packing lunches to laying out clothes. This ensures that everyone starts the day out without the added stress of hurrying or running late.

Develop a Routine

A daily routine is critical when trying to transition your child into a school schedule. You can support your child by also sticking to a regular routine daily and by having visual reminders of the tasks that each day entails. For example, using pictures or a chart with chores, such as brushing teeth or bedtime, can help your child adapt to the rigors of school.

Going back to school is an exciting time for children, and it marks an important milestone in their life. These strategies can be particularly helpful for parents of children with learning differences, behavioral disorders or ADHD, and could help set a tone for the day that is conducive to the learning and socialization that school provides. Support your student by using these tips to help them adjust to the new school year.

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