As the fall semester comes to an end, many students can experience an increase in their stress and anxiety levels as they try to finish off strong.

As parents, there are a few things we can do to help alleviate some of this stress and help them end on a positive note. Here are a couple of tips for helping your kids through school stress.

First, this is a good opportunity to encourage your kiddos to take initiative and reach out to teachers if they’re concerned about specific classes. Encourage them to ask about make-up work, extra credit, re-taking any exams and anything else they can do to improve their grade.

If you haven’t already, consider implementing a set study time at home each day, especially as your kiddos near final exams. Make sure you create a good study space away from distractions. This time should be specifically for school work and studying.

It’s also important to have open communication with your student’s teachers to ensure you’re both on the same page and can help your student stay on track.

Second, it’s important to teach our kiddos how to manage their stress and different techniques to remain calm and relaxed. Help them learn to identify the situations that cause them stress or anxiety (i.e. test taking, asking questions in class or talking to a teacher), talk about how their bodies respond to these situations and then discuss different relaxation strategies to help them stay calm.

Some good strategies include taking slow, deep breaths; tightening and relaxing tense areas of the body; counting down and telling yourself to relax; or visualizing a relaxing scene in your mind. Eating a healthy, well-balanced diet, getting enough sleep at night and daily exercise can also help keep kiddos relaxed and can alleviate stress. Helping our kiddos implement these routines and role modeling these skills will lead to success in their academics.

Teaching our kids how to manage stress and how to take initiative will help them be more successful in school and can set them up for success in the future. For more information, visit www.boystown.org.

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Jennifer Simpson joined Boys Town in 2013 as a Family Teacher working with teenage boys and began working for the Intervention and Assessment homes in 2016 as an Intake and Compliance Specialist. In her current position Jennifer assesses youth referrals from different agencies regarding placement in the I&A homes, as well as provides resource information to consumers in need of services. Jennifer is also the mother of two young children and has a Bachelor of Social Work and a Master’s in Business Administration.

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