Easing children's back-to-school jitters

School Transition

TYLER (KYTX) - Afraid, shy, excited...

Licensed counselor Jan Younger with St. Paul Children's Foundation says these are all normal feelings kids might be experiencing before the start of the new school year.

"They don't always have it down and they are very nervous about going back to school and having some anxiety about that."

That's why she says you should offer them some encouragement.

"Say, 'You know, I know you're going to do well. You can do this'."

That's what Lori Sarter is telling her soon-to-be kindergartner.

"I Just told him how ready he is and how he'll be excited to get to hang out with the big kids."

Younger says you should also try to mentally prepare your children for what they can expect in the classroom.

"They think in pictures. So, it's very important to calm their stress by going over to the school. You can have a trial run."

That means getting kids back into a routine. Younger says you should start your kids on their school sleep schedules now.

"There's a lot of things that trouble children, but the routine of school and the routine at home need to kind of match one another."

Sarter says keeping those routines year round is important in her home.

"We knew they were going back and, to be honest, it just keeps them happier during the summer too."

Younger recommends putting your children to bed 10 to 15 minutes earlier every night up until the first day of class to get them adjusted.

You'll want to do the same thing when you wake them up in the morning too. Start making that time earlier and earlier.

Younger says kids ages five to 12 need 10 hours of sleep every night. Teens need nine.


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