Some of our children have now been out of school for coming up to six months in a pandemic that no one could have predicted.
Whilst this time has been filled with worry and stress, it no doubt also came with the opportunity to reconnect as a family. However, one pressure many simply weren’t ready for, was home-schooling, and it looks like us parents can now hang up our teacher hats and hand back over to the pro’s!
But what can we do to prepare our children for returning to school? What if they’re feeling anxious or they no longer know what to expect?
To help answer these questions, I’ve spoken to Kent Tutors and a Professional Therapist and here’s what they had to say…
How to prepare your child to return to school
- ‘Talk your child through their new school routine and answer any questions as best as you can. If you don’t know the answer say you don’t know, jot the question down and tell your child the you will try and found out the answer. Use positive language about their return to school and try not to let your concerns affect them.’ Sarah Webb, Read to Grow Tuition.
- ‘Be your child’s calm as they return to school. I understand it is a very uncertain time and parents and children may be anxious about returning to school. Talk to your child about any anxiety or worries they have returning to school, but avoid passing on your own anxiety or worries about the return. Focus on the positives and get them excited about returning to school.’ Kirsty Jordan, Abubdance Therapy, Education and Coaching
- ‘Around 2 weeks before school begins, try to establish a routine again – even if it’s not work related. Get up at a sensible time (I know!! Must these lovely lockdown lie-ins come to an end.?!!), have breakfast and get dressed. Then spend a little time reading, either sharing books together, or alone. Perhaps go for a walk or get some fresh air in the garden at what would be break-time in school. Then after dinner, to get those hands warmed up for writing again, maybe have your child write a journal, with a few paragraphs about what they did that day. This will help ease your children back into a ‘learning mindset’ after such a long time away from school.’ Helena Pearson, Sharp Student Tuition
- ‘Run through the new routine with your child, giving them reassurance every step of the way, so they know what to expect as they start school.’ Kirsty Jordan, Abubdance Therapy, Education and Coaching
- ‘Read, read, read every day! Ten minutes’ minimum, if you can do twenty minutes then even better. Your child should be reading aloud to you, even up to Year Six, as this is important for their fluency development. Remember to ask questions as you read together, and make sure it is interactive and enjoyable for your child.’ Jo Broadey, Bright Sky Tutoring
- ‘Don’t compare what your child’s school are doing with other schools-each school has had to plan individually, based on a range of factors, as schools vary greatly in size, indoor/outdoor space, number of students and staff. Speak to your child’s school if you have concerns or questions regarding the return without your child being aware if you can. Feeling aware and confident yourself with any changes schools have put in place is important.’ Kirsty Jordan, Abubdance Therapy, Education and Coaching
Wishing you all the best of luck with your children returning to school in Kent, and please do reach out to any of our experts here who have helped to provide us with these tips as they have plenty more support to give!