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The school year is in full swing and your child is adjusting to once again being in that unique social environment. It’s always important to strike a balance between involving yourself in your child’s life and allowing them room to develop a sense of independence. Socializing at school can be the first time they form a consistent identity outside of your family, and his or her social comfort becomes increasingly important to their sense of self. Yet do stay involved by keeping the following tips in mind:

  1.  Car pooling and volunteering for school events always gives the parent a bird’s eye view of the interactions between the children.
  2.  Get to know your child’s friends. Know your child’s friends’ names, what they like and who their parents are. Who is your child’s best friend and more importantly WHY?
  3. Make contact with your child’s teachers. Make it a routine to touch base with your child’s teachers every so often. Don’t wait for the official “parent-teacher” quarterly conference, make contact during drop off and pick up times or at school events.
  4. Ask your child. Talk to your child not only about his/her day but how other children treat them. For example a question like, “how are you getting along with the kids in your class?” can lead to a revealing conversation about how your child sees themselves in the social environment of the classroom or playground. Be aware of your child’s typical mood before and after the school day.
  5. This may seem obvious, but of course, all physical injury needs to be thoroughly account for: by the child, the teacher and notified to the school authorities.

Learning how to deal with everyday school situations is a life skill that our children will continue to develop during these school years. Talking with your child regularly will establish you as the one they can rely on for support as they grow up to become healthy adults.

Take care and stay well,

Dr. de Freitas

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