MINT HILL, NC – What is anxiety? According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, anxiety is apprehensive uneasiness. Due to the COVID 19 outbreak and uncertainties in our society, many people are dealing with crippling worry. Some students are returning to the classroom, some are continuing online learning and others are participating in hybrid learning (combined in-class and online learning). Regardless of if your child is an online, hybrid, or in-class student, he may be dealing with anxiety.
What can we do as parents and leaders to help our students manage their anxious feelings? The Child Mind Institute of New York gives several suggestions on how to help your child manage anxiety. Breathe and talk it out. Walk your child through taking deep breaths. Once she is calm, let your child know that it is ok if everything does not always work out according to plan. Encourage positive thinking and come up with a plan if things don’t go the way they would like. Model how to manage anxiety by verbalizing how you are feeling and demonstrate how you are managing it. Avoid asking your child leading questions (“Are you anxious about going back into the classroom?”), which can lead your child to heightened anxiety. Rather, ask your child open-ended questions (“How do you feel about going back to the classroom?”). Have your child talk about the good things about learning online, in the classroom, or using the hybrid model. Focusing on the positive will help curb anxiety in both children and adults.