From March 8th, children and young people who have been out of school for almost a whole term will be returning to the building. It will be perfectly natural for you and your children to have mixed feelings about going back.
You have spent a lot of time together, without all the diversions such as holidays, day trips, seeing friends and family that you would normally expect to happen.
You and your children may be experiencing a whole raft of emotions about going back, from excitement to anxiety, disappointment etc.
Tempers might get frayed as they and we process conflicting emotions.
There may also be anxieties around their friendships – some might find it difficult to fit back in where they left off or may lack the vocabulary and skills to rebuild the kind of relationships they may have experienced before lockdown.
That’s before even considering getting back into the school routine groove!
Some things you could do to help you all through
Offer to pray for your children as they go on their way to school or tell them you will be praying for them during the day.
Recognise everyone’s emotions for what they really are, including your own. Anxiety might be the source of it all.
Make some time to ‘be kind’ to your children and to yourselves, and either in the evenings or at the weekend:
Build in time to listen and be prepared to take time to listen even if it’s not the best time for you. You might need to try to hear what’s going on under the surface - things that your child is finding difficult to articulate.
Plan something you all enjoy for the weekend - a special meal, games night, film night, trip to a favourite park...
Below are some links to helpful tips on building strong mental health and processing emotions - for parents and their children of all school ages.
Our team is here if you need help.
Tara Russell - Project Worker for Ministry with Children, young people and Families
Ann Sharp - Early Years Adviser
Dot Salmon - Youth Adviser
Emma Anderton - Children, Families & Youth Missioner
We are praying for you and your children, that you will have grace and patience and that you will know God’s love surrounding you and your family.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. - Philippians 4:6-7
- Tips for parents/carers from mentalhealth.org.uk
- Emotional Health tips
- Worksheet to help children process feeling on going back to school
- Letting Go of things missed and looking forward to the future
- Self care tips for children from NHS
- Faith based ideas for exploring friendship from Guildford Diocese
- How to help kids from YFC
Prayer Trail for children returning to school
As children return to school take some time to pray as a family or for families in your church in this interactive prayer trail. See how many different trees and plants you can find. Take photos and find out what they are. Either as a church or as individual households you can use this trail in your local park or in your home or garden.
View the Prayer Trail
From parenting in faith a good facebook video for all ages.