End of Year

The month of June can be very stressful for children at school. They know that the summer holidays are coming, but often have mixed feelings. Will they go to daycare, summer school, have a variety of babysitters, different day camps, away to Grandma's?

Children know that they are leaving their teacher. Summer seems endless. Even if school is not easy for children, it is a structure and a routine that is familiar. Summer means everything changes. And, that is what might trigger some behaviors.

Even though teachers are trying to keep kids engage, there might be more test writing. Reports are due! Weather is warm and kids are outside more often. Schedules might loosen a little, but a smart teacher will try to keep things as close to the usual routine as possible, but it is hard.

Tips are:
Acknowledge the changes, but don't dwell on them.
Tell kids that you know they are resilient! You trust them to be able to cope with changes, but acknowledge that there is an adjustment period--discuss and prepare for new events by taking a drive, walking around a new place or meeting new caregivers for a short meeting. Have confidence that they will cope!
Then, don't dwell on it.

Some kids may need a visual of where they are going. Take a photo, write a social story or create a calendar or a weekly or daily schedule to help structure the timeline. Add in reward times, and family times that will help the child realize that good things are part of those long, lazy days of summer. Create a comfort box of items for a quiet break in the day--include notes, photos, stickers, and some fidget toys to hold that will help calm a child. It is an important skill to learn to comfort yourself!

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