The end of the school year can be exciting as children are ready for summer and ready for some time off from academics, but the last month or so can be a struggle for some. Children are ready for summer and do not want to have to finish the last of the academic work for the school year. This may be more true this year than others as this year has not been typical. Some children have been in person for the year, others have been remote all year, and others have been back and forth between these. This can lead to burnout even earlier this year as the constant change and different regulations have been more stressful for many children.
How can you combat this burnout and help your children finish off the end of the school year? There are several factors to consider in helping your child complete the rest of the school year. One important factor to consider is how your child is doing with their mental and emotional health. Is your child overwhelmed? Are you noticing that your child is having a hard time staying focused in school and on schoolwork at home? While you want your child to finish up the school year, it is also important to consider their mental health. This does not mean that they do not need to finish the work, but maybe allow for a few breaks or change up the environment. If the weather is nice, can they finish their schoolwork outside? What other support can you provide for them? Make sure that you allow for your children to express their feelings in a healthy way. The end of the school year can be hard, but this year has not been like any other year so there may be more emotions and burnout.
It can also help your child if you help them to understand that the school year is almost done. Do you have fun summer plans? Is there a vacation or activity that they can look forward to? The teachers may also be providing fun end of the year activities that you can point to in order to keep them motivated. In my daughter’s elementary school, they are doing an ABC countdown to the end of the year and each day is something different such as “B is for Backwards day” which meant the kids wore their clothes backwards. This can make the end of the school year more fun as well as they can look forward to the new adventure and idea each day. If the school is not doing one, can you provide one at home?
Make sure that you are communicating with your child about why they are feeling the way they are. If children feel that they are heard, this can make it easier for them to deal with their emotions. It can be hard when children have bigger emotions as they may not know the best way to handle them and cope with them. If you help with this process, it can make it easier to cope with their emotions as well as get through the end of the year.
What motivates your child? Is there something fun that they enjoy doing that you can use as an incentive? This does not mean you need to do something big each day, but can they work toward something bigger for the end of the week or school year? If they need more incentives, can there be something smaller at the end of the day? Think about how you motivate yourself to get work or other chores done that you do not want to complete. Do you reward yourself after finishing it? This is the same idea.
This year as the school year is finishing think about all that your child has accomplished in a school year that was not like any other in recent years. When you think about this, it helps to remind you how difficult this year may be to finish so help your child to complete it and provide the support and motivation that he or she needs. If you need any advice or tips to do this, reach out to me via email.