As the back-to-school season approaches, a mix of nervousness and excitement fills the air for students, school staff, and families alike. Whether it’s students anticipating meeting their new teachers, educators planning their lessons for the year, families adjusting their schedules, or school leaders coordinating with transportation companies and making last-minute hires, this time is filled with balancing responsibilities within their personal lives.
On July 31st, iMPACTFUL's Founder and CEO, Scilla Andreen, engaged in an enlightening EdWebinar alongside Dr. Wendy Amato, Chief Academic Officer of the K12 Coalition, and Keely Keller, Director of Professional Programs at Teaching Channel,about back-to-school anxiety with actionable solutions to help the transition.
Delving into the root causes of this anxiety, this transformative session not only provided practical tools and solutions for the audience but served as a source of inspiration, fostering hope for those grappling with back-to-school anxiety.
Effective back-to-school planning is essential. The new school year can be stressful, so it's crucial to have a well-thought-out plan in place before it all begins.
Exposure therapy can reduce feelings of anxiety. Before the start of school, parents and children can engage in simple exposure therapy to train their brains to enter a calmer state in moments of stress. This can involve assessing and managing emotions on a scale from 1 to 10.
Neuroplasticity is a natural phenomenon that highlights the brain's ability to adapt and change. Understanding this can help us approach struggling individuals with empathy and support rather than "fixing" their challenges.
We have to meet people where they are. When someone faces difficulties, the goal should not be to solve the problem yourself but to meet them where they are and offer assistance empathetically. Providing support during challenging times can make a significant difference.
Cultivate open and honest conversations. As adults, we often feel compelled to present ourselves as having everything together. However, having conversations about struggles can lead to profound relationships and create a foundation for further growth.
There's power in kindness and belonging. Focusing on kindness towards ourselves and others is essential. Letting people know they belong and matter creates an environment where individuals feel safe and can thrive.
Students' opinions and thoughts matter. Amplifying youth voices encourages them to express their views and ideas, fostering greater participation and engagement. Giving students a voice empowers them to take ownership of their education.
These takeaways emphasize the importance of planning, empathy, honest communication, and creating an inclusive environment for students to learn and be themselves. Take advantage of this incredible opportunity to watch the recording!