From understood.org, a non-profit organization that believes, “With the right support, parents can help children unlock their strengths and reach their full potential.”
›› Help your child discover how they are feeling about a situation by asking specific, low stress questions, such as, “Are you nervous about the math test on Tuesday? How can we make sure you are prepared for it?”
›› Break homework down into manageable chunks each day.
›› Help your child prepare for new experiences and decrease anxiety by doing some research ahead of time and discussing expectations.
›› Celebrate small victories and take opportunities to praise accomplishments.
›› Suggest positive phrases for stressful situations. Instead of, “I’m an idiot, I’ll never get it,” suggest, “I can do it; it just might take a little while.”
›› Establish consistent routines for homework and afterschool activities.
›› Seek your child’s input on an activity that might help reduce stress, increase self-esteem, and help them to “blow off steam.”
›› Find a positive balance between afterschool activities and schoolwork.
›› Be specific about expectations. Rather than making a general statement like, “I need you to start taking more responsibility,” try saying, “I need you to start making your bed each morning before school,” and then demonstrate what that should look like.
›› If you still feel that your child is struggling with stress and anxiety, consider contacting someone outside of the family for them to talk to, such as a pediatrician or counselor.