Going back to school can be both stressful and exciting on kids and parents. From hectic mornings to new classmates and teachers, homeoworks and extracurricular activities, the start of the new school year can be overwhelming. When all these demands fall upon our children, they may sleep less, eat less, and become irritable.
Here are some stress relief tips to reduce back to school stress.
Eat healthy breakfast
It is important for kids to eat breakfast every day, so make sure that they start the day right. According to studies, children who eat breakfast perform better in the classroom and are more alert during the school day. Skipping breakfast can make your kids feel irritable, restless and tired. Their energy and mood may drop by mid-morning.
What they eat for breakfast also matters. Whole grain cereals or bread, eggs, yogurt, milk or fruits are great breakfast options. If you’re pressed for time, you can cut the fruits before going to bed and then just add them to the yogurt or cereal in the morning.
Students have tons of school supplies – books, notebooks, papers etc. If these things aren’t organized, then your home will be filled with clutter. A cluttered or messy home can contribute to stress. To alleviate stress, take time everyday to tidy up the school supplies and arrange them in drawers, boxes or shelves.
Re-start sleep cycles
Most parents become more lax on their children’s bedtime during the summer. Children are permitted to go to bed later and sleep in later. This is why many of them are having a hard time adjusting once school starts.
Don’t wait until a night before school to implement a strict sleeping schedule. Move back bedtimes to more normal hours at least a week before the school starts. This way, it will be much easier for them to readjust to the stresses of school later on.
Provide healthy outlets for stress
The classroom can be over-stimulating for some kids. According to a survey that was conducted by the American Psychological Association, nearly a third of children experienced stomach aches, headaches and lying awake at night. These symptoms are often associated with stress.
To help your children deal with stress, I suggest that you provide healthy outlets for stress. It can be in the form of play, exercise, eating nutritious meals or having enough rest. Exploratory time for the imagination is also a great way to relieve stress. Don’t feel compelled to schedule every last hour of your child’s free time.