Take (some of) the Stress Out of School Mornings

If you’re a parent, you know what we’re talking about. You may even remember your own childhood experiences.

Mornings are “kind of like a perfect storm,” says David Anderson, PhD, senior director of the ADHD and Disruptive Behavior Disorders Center at the Child Mind Institute. “You have a number of things that have to get done,” he explains, “and there’s also a time limit.” The pressure cooker, says Child Mind Institute writer Beth Arky “can, at its worst, lead to yelling [and] tears.”

Dr. Anderson explains that kids with behavorial issues or who are depressed or anxious may have trouble focusing or are avoiding something happening at school. Not to be forgotten that home-to-school is a transition, and lots of us don’t care for that, either.

CMI recommends some solutions:

  • Plan ahead. Make lunches, lay out clothes, and organize the backpacks the night before. Talk with your children about the next morning’s needs.
  • Prioritize your own expectations. Let’s worry about the essentials – brushing teeth, eating something, taking her backpack. Is making the bed really that important?
  • Provide incentives. You may not believe in them, but it’s something to consider. How about points for a special treat?
  • Stay calm. Going ballistic isn’t going to make the mornings any easier.

Read more about your child’s development at the Child Mind Institute.

Mental Wellness
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