The COVID-19 pandemic has caused major disruptions to daily life and children are feeling these changes deeply. While a return to school will be welcomed by many students, others will be feeling anxious or frightened. Here are tips to help your children navigate some of the complicated emotions they may be facing with going back to school.

How parents can help their children navigate their feelings during school reopenings.

Jeremy Lin

My child is scared to go back to school. How can I help him feel at ease? 

Starting school or starting a new school year can be stressful at the best of times, let alone during a global pandemic. You can make him feel at ease by having an open conversation about what it is that’s worrying him and letting him know that it’s natural to feel anxious.

  • Be on guard for a surge of solicitations related to any highly publicized crisis.
  • Do not respond to, or click on any attachments, links or pictures.
  • Beware of individuals or others claiming to be third-party intermediaries for charities or those in need.
  • Avoid name confusion by independently verifying that the charity is legitimate before you donate. 

How can I encourage my child to follow precautions (such as frequent handwashing,  etc.) at school without alarming her?

Children may feel nervous or reluctant to return to school, especially if they have been learning at home for months. Be honest – for example, you could go through some of the changes they may expect at school, such as needing to wear forms of protective clothing like masks.

Children may also find it difficult being physically distanced from friends and teachers while at school – you could encourage them to think about other ways to bond and stay connected.

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