Back to school jitters are natural but there is a lot you can do to ensure they are emotionally ready for the new environment.

The first bell of 2018 academic year has rung and first term jitters are still a real thing for some kids, especially those who are entering the classroom for the very first time. 

Parenting expert Nikki Bush says the change in a child’s usual environment; in this case a new school – pre-primary, primary and high school, and even moving onto the next grade mean kids find it daunting and stressful to adapt.

“And parents the world over agree, when kids are fretful and uneasy, mom and dad are too,” she says. Here’s what Bush advises to help kids cope better.

A movement matter:

Bush says activities that involve movement are highly beneficial, it raises endorphins and puts kids in a better move. She suggests the following fun, interactive movement games:

·         Rough and tumble

·         Hide and seek

Family time is fun time:

Quality time with mom, dad also eliminate stress and is ‘”extremely important” to help kids relax. Bush says there are a few entertaining games fit for the whole family.

·         Cricket

·         Soccer

·         Hopscotch

“Parent-child interaction has a calming effect on kids and helps to minimise stress. It means bonding as a family, which also acts as a channel of support for children, they feel safe and secure and are reminded that mom and dad are there for them every step of the way,” Bush says.

Say play:

Since play is a universal language, Bush says “play your sillies away”, it has a calming effect on kids and helps to minimise stress. A few of the games she recommends.

·         Board games

·         Bikes and scooters

·         Lego

“Mom and dad, haul out all sorts of games and toys and let them play to their heart’s content. It does wonders,” she says.

Drop-off deal:

If children are more anxious with one parent than with the other, simply swap drop-off roles and “don’t feel guilty about it”. Bush advises parents to be:

·         Flexible

·         Adaptable