First Day of School: 15 Mental Health Tips

“You’re off to great places. Today is your first day! Your mountain is waiting, so get on your way!” – Dr. Seuss

1. Just Because Someone Says It, Doesn’t Make It True

Kids can say mean things to hurt you because they want something and are upset. Adults can do the same. They can say hurtful, discouraging things to children that are not true.

2. Doing Something Wrong Doesn’t Make You a Bad Person

Younger children often interpret “being wrong” in an adult’s eyes as meaning they are a terrible person or very disliked. Teach your child that their teacher is upset with what they did, but they do not hate you as a person.

3. It’s Okay to Cry

As a child you may have heard adults say “stop crying, or I will give you something to cry about.” Unfortunately, this mentality can lead children to bottle up and internalize their issues.

4. Having Fun Is Important

Doing fun things like playing, interacting with friends, running, and jumping are essential parts of development. There are many ways a child is learning outside of math, reading, and writing, and “having fun” helps them keep up good morale and be more successful in their other areas of learning.

5. Teach Them How to Take a Breather

When they feel like a situation is becoming too overwhelming, children will reach their upper limits. Tell them to cool off in their room or step a few feet away from the situation and let them have a breather. Encourage them to take a deep breath and ignore what other people are doing or saying.

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