More threads by Retired


Begin practicing back-to-school routine few days before the big day, says psychologist
Published on August 8, 2014

For children (and parents), going back to school?or even going for the first time?can be a time filled with excitement?and anxiety. Whether a parent has a child beginning school for the first time, starting over at a brand new school, or living with a disability that might require some extra support in those first crucial days, Jessica Glass Kendorski, associate professor of psychology at Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, says that connection and predictability are important factors in easing the transition.

"It's much easier for a child to transition to an environment where they feel connected, and feel they are able to predict what they may experience," Kendorski explains. She offers a few tips for parents:

  • Get the lay of the land. Before school even begins, parents can visit a new school; request a copy of their child's schedule; meet with their teacher and even request to visit the bus. "The more you are able to provide a preview of what the environment will look like and what they will experience, the transition will be less anxiety provoking for you and your child," Kendorski says.
  • Prepare and practice. Begin practicing the back-to-school routine a few days before the big day, Kendorski says. Visual cues?such as pictures of waking up, getting dressed and eating breakfast?and compiling a checklist of necessary supplies, can also help a child feel more prepared.
  • Tell a story. Existing research shows that storytelling can help build connections. To that end, Kendorski suggests taking pictures at the new school?of the building, the teachers, the principal, the classroom?and use them to create a story about the first day of school. "Storytelling can help ease transitions and promote a positive connection with the school even before they arrive," she says.

Above all, Kendorski says parents should discuss their child's upcoming school year with enthusiasm and excitement. "Positivity is contagious," she says.


I think this practicing to go back to school routine is a good idea.

I remember my first day at school, especially when it was time to go home. All I knew was to catch a certain bus (#139). Because I was not sure where to catch the buses, I got to the bus stop late. Other buses that arrived were not #139. Soon I was standing alone, so I decided to walk home. But since I was not allowed to cross the street, I walked around the block. :lol:
On returning to where I started from I felt hopelessly lost. There was nobody to help me, so I kept walking.
Eventually someone could see I was lost, and took back to school. The head teacher found out who I was and where I lived. He took me home.

As a small child, this was not the first time I was put in a position, or in a circumstance, that baffled me.
You know, I think my parents quite often thought that I was capable of comprehend things like an adult. Similar to how many people actually expect a dog to think like a human.

It was not until a read a book on Human Development did I realize why I was incapable of comprehending and remembering certain things as a child.
I wish such a book (at that time) was available for my parents to read.
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