Creative Child

How to Combat Back to School Jitters in 4 Steps

by Michelle Dempsey M.S., CPRW

If you’re reading this, you’ve likely learned that effective parenting takes a good amount of planning and a triple-shot of patience with your morning coffee. It’s those moments in your parenting history that go awry when you choose to forego planning ahead and opt for just winging it.

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Almost as quickly as you can say “school supplies,” a new school year will be upon us. And this is one event you must seriously plan ahead for.

There is something about the looming “back to school” deadline that quickly puts summer to bed and awakens a whole new range of anxieties. A new schedule, a new teacher, a new routine, and possibly a new set of classmates to connect with could all throw your child’s emotions out of whack. As a former teacher-turned-parent, I’m here to tell you that it’s all okay – and it’s all going to be alright, if you plan ahead.

In fact, it's perfectly normal to have a child with the back-to-school jitters.

To help you plan ahead and get a firm grip on your child’s emotions, I’ve put together my list of ways to help ease this time of transition, and have your little learner eager and excited for a new year of educational experiences.

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1. Connect with friends.

Once the new school list has made it into your mailbox, be sure to connect with any friends that your child is excited about seeing in the new school year. Having a buddy or two to look forward to learning with can take the back to school jitters down, big time!

2. Get familiar with the new teacher!

As a former teacher, I can speak from experience here. Many parents feel as if they’d be bothering their child’s new teacher by reaching out over the summer break, when in reality, the opposite is true. We want your child to be just as comfortable and excited as you do. Break the ice for your child by shooting an email and asking your child’s teacher to write a little note for him or her. This can make all the difference for a child whose biggest fear is “what if I don’t like my teacher?”

More tips for combatting back to school jitters on page 2...

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