A little way back to normal… (whatever “normal” is)
Finally, schools are ready to be re-opened to all pupils, returning to some sort of normality and routine! Whilst I am sure I am not the only parent that feels the relief of children returning into full time education, (and not just to finally have a little peace and no home-schooling to worry about) the benefits of children being in school feel all the more apparent. Teachers provide an education that most of us as parents just are not set up for, the social interaction they get in school with their peers and the resources that schools offer that most children just do not have at home. I take my hat off to those that choose to home school their children, it is no easy feat.
But whilst we are jumping for joy at the idea of returning how do our children feel about it? Have they missed it? Are they excited to be back with their friends? Maybe they are worried, nervous, anxious about returning. It’s quite some time since they have been in the classroom and now, they are going from their new normal back into the old normal. It is a big change to what they are now used to, the comfort of being at home, one to one working, if anything like my eldest, VERY frequent breaks (and snacks), no rushing out the door in the mornings… you get the idea.
So here we look at books that can help children settle back into school, relieve their worries, and make the next step back to ‘normal’ a little less daunting…
1. No worries
A fantastic interactive self-care activity book designed for young people who sometimes feel anxious or stressed. Aimed at children aged 7+ to colour and doodle their way to happiness, calm and confidence, the encouraging and simple activities and exercises tackle anxiety, sadness and stress; children will enjoy using their creativity to combat negative feelings, work out why they feel worried and how to put stress back in its place through writing, colouring, doodling and drawing. There is also an introduction and notes for grown-ups by consultant Dr Sharie Coombes, Child & Family Psychotherapist.
2. Keep Calm
This wonderful book for children is filled with encouraging, simple activities and exercises that tackle emotions and address anxieties which children may be experiencing. From feeling isolated from friends and families, to missing out on experiences at school, this book will show children how to feel more comfortable with the current uncertainty, enjoy the positives and talk to other about worries and concerns. Using creativity to combat negative feelings and work out how to cope with emotions through writing, colouring, doodling and activities. There is also a section for parents and guardians with important information on how to support their child by Dr Sharie Coombes, Child & Family Psychotherapist.
From a series of books that supports children and parents to manage common childhood worries, helping children to understand their feelings and to talk about what’s worrying them. This story follows Princess Louise as she starts school and doesn’t think she is nervous, until the nameless dread arrives. She learns to face her fears with a little bit of help from Gran. This book, and other in this series, contains expert advice, help and guidance for concerned parents by Dr Sharie Coombes an experienced child therapist.
Others in this series –
4. Story Books for Children
Story books are a fantastic way for children to relate feelings and emotions, put ideas into perspective and encourage them to talk and engage with you. With many books addressing common life experiences like making friends, having healthy relationships, finding solutions to a problem, working as a team – children relate these narratives to their own experiences meaning books for children have powerful messages that can really influence them in positive ways. The Bad Day is a great example, the hilarious story about the mishaps of a group of woodland friends contains a power message about working together. They all have their own problems Squirrel is left hanging when a search for a tasty nut goes wrong, Woodpecker has his beak buried in a tree trunk, Snake is tied in a knot, Turtle is upside down… they are all having a bad day. But when it turns out that little Mouse is having the worst day of all, they all pull together and work as a team to help him and each other.