Starting School After the Pandemic

This year, the thought of returning to school may have caused children to be excited and worried, as the pandemic process continues all over the world and in our country. Especially children who are emotionally sensitive, have problems in social relations, and have academic learning and attention problems may have felt this anxiety more intensely.

Situations where children may feel anxiety with the opening of schools;

  • Feeling insecure at school due to the ongoing pandemic process.

  • Not being able to feel ready for the new education program academically.

  • Not being able to master the technological knowledge necessary for distance education.

  • Experiencing performance anxiety about the courses in the curriculum.

  • Worrying about following teachers’ directions in distance education.

  • Worrying about having trouble in friendships after being away from school for a long time.

  • Concerned about their own health due to the fact that some children at school do not comply with the measures taken against the pandemic.

  • Fear of contracting COVID-19.

  • Worrying about family members getting sick

  • Worrying about facing situations such as illness or death that may occur in the family.

HOW CAN YOU PREPARE YOUR CHILDREN FOR THE BACK TO SCHOOL PROCESS?

Make you feel that you are with your child during the distance education process. Share this process with him. Create a program together. Have daily conversations with him after distance learning. Explain that due to the uncertainty of the pandemic process, it should be prepared for the changes that may be related to education.

Ask what things are worrying him. Have her voice her concerns about COVID, exams, or the start of school. For example, ask questions such as “What measures should be taken to cope with COVID-19”. Support your child to develop problem-solving skills in the face of unexpected events. Explain that their worries are normal.

Do not see technology as part of digital education. Take care to develop your computer skills in a way that can support your child. Support your child when he or she has a problem with technology during the distance education process. Be a guide about the measures to be taken in the face of negative situations such as cyberbullying.

Try to adjust your child’s biological clock according to the school system. Support him to go to bed and wake up at appropriate times. Help him obtain the necessary tools and materials for the school.

Take care to be more understanding towards adolescents. Be aware of their socialization needs. Since March this year, staying at home has negatively affected adolescents emotionally. Therefore, allow them to spend time with each other on the phone and on social media at certain times.

WHAT CAN YOU DO IF YOU THINK YOUR CHILD IS ANXIETY?

Explain to your child that many of their friends also feel anxiety about returning to school, and that it is normal to feel this way. Make him feel ready to listen.

If your child has problems such as crying, fear, worry, pounding, anger, not being able to sleep, not being able to eat, headache, stomachache or school refusal, seek professional help.

WHAT CAN YOU DO FOR YOURSELF AS A PARENT?

Do not disrupt your daily routines. Try to balance your physical and emotional needs for survival. Turn the time you stay at home into an opportunity. Get yourself a hobby.

Be aware of your own feelings and reactions to the pandemic. Be careful not to project your own anxiety onto your child. How worried are you? How flexible are you?

Don’t compare your child’s anxiety with your own anxiety. Do not judge him if his thoughts about the pandemic do not match your thoughts. Avoid making uncontrolled conversations in front of your child. It is not the right approach to feel no anxiety as well as being overly anxious. Your child’s ability to stay calm and adapt to changing conditions depends on your approach.

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