Summer is a time for play and relaxation, where children can forget the classroom, homework, papers and books. For some, returning to school is an opportunity to go back and reconnect with friends, while others go back to school means stress, worry and fear of what might face in the classroom, school bus and playground.

Problems may be increased if a child is starting a new school as a result of the removal or separation of parents. Preventive measures can now ease the transition for both parents and child.

Signs that show your child has trouble:

1. A lack of talking about school

2 . Anger at changes in routine, like going to bed early

3 . Having fear and concern of what to expect next

4 .  Bed wetting and nightmares

5 .  Not wanting to go back to school to buy clothes or equipment
Children need help to work through the tension and fear of these problems.
Parents can help to:

1.   Listen carefully to what the child says.

2 .  Explore specific fears, with the possible ways of dealing with them

3 .  Avoid the countdown to the first day of school

4 .  Talk about how they have successfully managed change in the past

5 .  Meet with the teacher and principal if the child is new at school

If your child is showing signs of anxiety about returning to school, seek help from a registered marriage and family therapist in your community. These professionals are members of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy Clinic and are highly qualified to work with families on issues that cause conflict and tension.