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Happy Easter! Spring is here, a new term is under way, and Easter Break is nearly upon us! In this message, I would just like to take a few minutes and share some advice with you about ways you could possibly help manage your child’s stress. As your child moves through each grade, school requirements get more challenging, thus many students experience higher levels of stress.
Learning to manage stress is a valuable skill that will help students though middle school, high school, post-secondary studies and later throughout their life and careers. While we can’t make the world less stressful for kids, we can help them develop healthy responses to stress. One of the most important responses is an attitude that stress is challenging; not threatening.
“The key to reducing stress is providing students with a feeling of control over their education, information about what to expect, and feedback regarding what can be done to improve their performance. Students who do not feel helpless will adopt their own coping strategies.” (http://www.ericdigests.org/pre-926/stress.htm )
Without these skills, chronic or high stress could lead to serious health problems. Anxiety is a normal reaction to stress and can actually be beneficial in some situations, for others, it could become excessive. If you suspect your child is having difficulty in managing stress levels, please contact our FOW or your Physician; they are great resources to assist you. The following 5 tips (which I have modified from WebMD.com) will help you in managing stress for your child:
Organization and time-management skills – Prevent stress by building confidence. Help your child learn good time management and organizational skills. Planning ahead and finishing on time will help them handle school and homework demands without anxiety.
Homework tips - Help your child tackle homework by using a planner for assignments, finding a quiet place free from distractions and getting help from school when needed. The teachers are always willing to assist your child after school; you just need to inquire. As well, make sure your child isn’t overbooked with extracurricular activities.
Healthy sleep and exercise habits - Too little sleep makes stress worse. Adolescents need about 9 ½ hours per night. Little or no exercise also makes stress levels rise. Adding some activity to the day will keep the stress from building up.
Easing parental pressure - Pressuring your children to excel in school often only makes stress worse. A lower-key approach by parents can help ease kid’s stress.
Fun and leisure - All work and no play makes kids … stressed out. Preserve time on weekend and even after school, if possible, for unstructured time to relax and play. School goes by fast. Having fun lowers stress levels and helps kids keep it in perspective.
There are numerous websites that you can search for more tips on student stress reduction, and how to cope and manage stress. For more details on the tips I highlighted, please go to http://www.webmd.com/parenting/features/coping-school-stress?page=3
I always welcome your involvement in your child’s education and should you have any questions or comments about your child’s education please feel free to contact your child’s teacher, or myself, Mr. Spila.
Have a Safe and Blessed Easter, and enjoy the Easter Break!
See you April 18th, 2017
Vince Spila, Principal
Better Education … It’s as simple as that! C’est vrai!