Emotional Changes in Students

Posted by Mary Beard on 1 November 2013 | Comments

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Question: I am concerned about my daughter who just started school this year. My once happy and full of energy child now seems shy, fearful and quiet. What happened?

Answer: On one hand, it is quite typical for a child beginning school for the first time to be apprehensive about a new routine. The child’s surroundings have changed and they now have educational responsibilities. There are new friends to make and a new teacher to trust in taking care of them. This is a big change but most children seem to make the adjustment fine after a few weeks into school.

Some, like your daughter, continue to show signs of concern to their parents. At what point do you go in for the rescue? Let me remind you of some facts that might help put into perspective the importance of giving your child a good start in school.

The first few years of school lay the foundation for the rest of your child’s schooling. A child’s teachers during those years will largely determine how they approach learning, the nature of their attitude toward authority and how they see themselves – as a success, or as a failure.

An important decision? You bet! What happened to your daughter? Maybe she needs some extra time to mature. Many parents are now holding their children back a year for this very reason. It might be that your child needs an environment that is not so institutional. The large size of the class and various ages of the students in one building might be overwhelming to her at this age.

There are many possibilities, but limited space does not permit me to cover all of them. I do know this one thing to be true: A child’s attitude and actions are a mirror into their heart. Your child is depending on you to place her on the right path. Does that mean a rescue? Maybe.