Your Children’s School Problems Can Stir Up Mixed Emotions
As parents, we are worried that our children:
- Lack Social Skills
- Have Overwhelming Anxiety
- Might Be The Subject Of Bullying
- Are Not Getting Enough Help In School
- We Worry Current School Problems May Cause Inability To Function Later In Life
As a parent or guardian, ask yourself these questions: Does your child display signs of stress? Are they beginning to have aggressive or violent tendencies? Young children will find it difficult to express this to you, but what you can look for:
- Changes in mood, acting irritable, withdrawn from activities that used to be enjoyable for them.
- Routinely expressed worries, complaining more than usual about school, crying more often, displaying unusual fearful reactions, clinging to a parent or teacher.
- Sleeping too much or not enough, eating too much or not enough.
- Physical symptoms: increase in stomach or headaches, even after a clean bill of health. Feeling “sick” more frequently.
- Listen for words from your child like: “worried, confused, annoyed, angry” or “No one likes me,” “I’m stupid,” or “Nothing is fun.” Any comments from children that display exreme tendencies such as “always” or “never”.
- Is your child worrying or irritable more frequently? Is there a significant change in your child’s behavior? Was there an event that deeply impacted them in the past 6 months or so? Symptoms can be misleading.
It is not uncommon for children to have some of these signs, however, when they start to add up and the child is becoming more and more unhappy, it may be time for a parent to intervene. Updates from the school staff can be very helpful to identify school problems and get a head start helping your child improve. Don’t hesitate to reach out to your child’s teacher, or school counseling staff to understand what’s going on in school and if there are concerns from the school.
If you find your child has these behavioral signs, you are not alone
“Behavior issues that interfere with teaching and learning have notably worsened, according to an astonishing 62% of teachers who have been teaching in the same school for five or more years.”Scholastic.com reports: Classroom Behavior Problems Increasing, Teachers Say
“New research suggests that children entering school with behavioral problems, as a rule, can keep pace with classroom learning, but persistent behavior problems can be a strong indicator of how well these students adapt to the work world.”Children’s Bad Behavior Gives Insight to Academic Achievement and Later Career Success. The National Science Foundation (NSF)
There is good news
Mental health treatment for children is more effective than ever. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, (CBT), play therapy and relaxation skills (such as mindfulness) are very helpful ways to treat behaviors. Family therapy, advocacy, and child management skills for parents have also been proven effective.
It is important to note that improving positive social skills can have significant benefits: “Researchers also noted that popularity and positive social behavior in childhood and adolescence predicted higher levels of educational attainment in early adulthood. They said it is possible that children with stable positive social skills experience a supportive and conducive learning environment.”Children’s Bad Behavior Gives Insight to Academic Achievement and Later Career Success. The National Science Foundation (NSF)
What is the parent’s role in child school behavior & treatment?
This checklist has helped many people: Parenting 101: A Child Therapist’s 4 Ingredients to Good Parenting.
Counseling for your child can be an important step when school behaviors escalate or if you find barriers when implementing Choices, Consequences, Consistency and/or Care. We can help you navigate this and get the desired results with school behaviors. But first, consider:
Before your child begins any type of treatment you may want to ask what is the goal of treatment is and what new skills your child will learn as a result of it. You can also ask what to expect and what specifically you may see in your child as a result of the treatment? … You also want to be sure to ask specifically how you can best support your child and how you will be involved in your child’s treatment throughout the process.
How do you know that counseling will really work for your child? Well, not every child is a fit at Renew Hope and Healing. However, if we feel that we cannot provide the most effective treatment for your child, we will guide you to the appropriate child specialist. As an example of successful treatment for a child, a Victor Counseling Practice parent stated recently:
“My child can manage bullying comments better; his grades are going up and he is not as irritable at home. I think he is going to make it through this school year okay.”
Collaboration with community services and the school is key to many children’s success.
What Renew Hope and healing can offer
- Convenient hours for those who need appointments after school, work or extra-curricular activities.
- We accept most insurances. See here for more information about payment/insurance. We will work with people who have a financial hardship.
- Convenient locations in Victor, Henrietta, Pittsford, and Penfield, NY. We also provide telehealth.
- All therapists are licensed in NYS and have significant experience with childhood school behaviors.
- Many children at the last session report enthusiastically that they want to return.