The New Kid
No one likes being the new kid. But this school year, there are bound to be some in every school. It’s understandably nerve-wracking to go to a new school – whether you’re the only new kid, or if you are simply joining your classmates in moving to a new building. As adults, we can help ease that anxiety. Here are some tips:
- Acknowledge their feelings. Being nervous is very normal, and an empathetic ear might be just what she needs.
- Answer their questions. Many times, kids feel anxious because they fear the unknown. As much as you can, tell them what their new school will look like or who their teachers will be. Remind them of people they have met from the school, or of things that will be similar to what they’ve experienced in the past.
- Take care of them physically. This might sound like a no-brainer, but things like junk food and not getting enough sleep contribute to anxiety. Help your child’s body find its healthiest state, so that his mind can follow suit.
- Help think through solutions. If your child is nervous about riding a new bus, talk through those concerns. What should they do if they accidentally get on the wrong bus? Who can help them if the bus never comes to pick them up?
- Send something from home. For a young child, that might be a special stuffed animal if the teacher permits. For an older child, a simple note in their lunch can go a long way.
- Be in contact with the teacher. Your child is probably not the first anxious student to come into the classroom. Talk to the teacher about how your child is feeling, and ask for feedback on those first few days. You might be surprised at how well they do!