Back to school tips under covid-19 conditions

A collection of thoughts from this clinical psychologist mum (@Mel_Woodfield) about easing the transition back to school next week for young kids. Hope they’re helpful.

1. Start the school day routine a few days before. Wake up, breakfast around the time you’ll need to on Monday – eases the rude awakening (literally) on the first day back 

2. Encourage participation in any kindy or school virtual chats this week (or create one with friends) to refresh social connections ahead of time. Even if they don’t say much online, it’ll help 

3. Talk about how screen time rules might change, and consider making a plan ahead of time, to lessen tired/overwhelmed indignant tantrums after school 

4.Expect tired/overwhelmed indignant tantrums after school. It’s not you. Our emotional thermostats are running at a higher temperature and it doesn’t take much to reach the boil 

5. Involve them in prepping – checking school bag, uniform are clean and ready, lunchbox and drink bottle – a few days beforehand 

6. What’s within their control? What are kids responsible for? Handwashing, social distancing, sneezing into elbows. What’s outside of their control? Useful to talk about. Also, that school will likely look a bit different 

7. Back to school might be hard work emotionally. Nice to have hard work acknowledged. Maybe they borrow your cool pen, or they find a sticker-covered note in their lunchbox, or they help choose/bake special snacks for school lunch 

8. Don’t feel the need to rush back to after school activities. We all want to support local businesses, but a slower pace of life might be needed for a wee while

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