Alloprof launches a guide to manage back-to-school stress

Clara Descurninges, The Canadian Press

MONTREAL — On the occasion of the new school year, Alloprof is launching a special section of its website to help manage the stress of this hectic period.

« Whether it’s for adults or for children, I think it’s a slightly anxiety-inducing time, even if it’s wanted, even if the children are eager to go back to school, because it’s the unknown, because it’s a change of routine that awaits us, ”explains the organization’s spokesperson Annie Harvey in a telephone interview.

The file put together by Alloprof contains testimonials from parents who have been there, but also concrete tips to support your child.

“The first thing is above all to have an attentive ear, to be attentive to the needs of our child, to his anxieties, to his questions, to answer them to the best of our knowledge, indicates Ms. Harvey. We make an effort to stay positive, to bet on what can interest the child also at school, for example a child who likes to talk a lot, ask questions, we can remind him that it is interesting the start of the school year, it’s an opportunity to meet friends, to have conversations, to ask our questions to the teacher.

She also recommends putting a routine back in place even before the start of classes, for example by imposing « a bedtime a little closer to school reality » to avoid having a shock on D-Day. It’s reassuring, but it’s also very easy because you know what’s coming next, so it helps the child to be a little more independent.

It is also possible to prepare a school calendar or to make a session of labeling of the material to make all this more concrete.

Straight into the unknown

Starting kindergarten, first year or high school are sensitive times because of the changes they bring.

For the little ones, it’s a very good idea to visit the school in advance on an introductory day, according to Ms Harvey, as this helps give them a clearer idea of ​​what to expect. We can then ask them “do you remember what your lockers are like, what color are they, are there hooks, do you remember your room?”

Alloprof also suggests using the « same, not the same » game to compare their past experience with their new class and remind them that some things may change, such as the presence of homework, but others, such as recess, remain. the same.

“In the end, you realize that there are more similar points than different points,” says Ms. Harvey. Afterwards, we take what is different and we can talk about it or read books about the start of the school year.

Give yourself the tools

The Alloprof website provides “magic formulas” to teach young people how to manage their anxiety themselves, even when parents are not present. These illustrated memory aids are in fact relaxation exercises based on breathing, the five senses and physical exercise.

Ms Harvey suggests teaching the youngster to “talk to his fear” out loud to reassure himself, “as if he were trying to reassure a friend”.

It’s also important to remember that parents can experience a lot of anxiety too, she says, herself a mother of three. To reduce stress, you have to do « quite the same thing as children », namely « read, ask people who have been there and trust our children: they are well equipped, they are capable , and often they are surprising”.

She recalls that when it comes to academic glitches, Alloprof is available online at all times, and teachers are there to answer questions on weeknights.


Back to top button