What to Do If Your Child Is Afraid to Go to School

The beginning of our children's academic life can produce a wide variety of reactions. It's even common for some children to be afraid to go to school. Today we want to offer parents some suggestion on how to respond to this.
What to Do If Your Child Is Afraid to Go to School

Last update: 18 October, 2018

What should I do if my children are afraid to go to school? To respond to this question, we first need to understand children’s nature and behavior.

Starting school is a moment of tension and anxiety, but it’s also the first step to new experiences. Whether they be more complicated or less so will depend on how prepared your child is to face them. Help from parents is fundamental.

The fear of going to school tends to appear most in children who are just starting school for the first time. However, it’s also common among children who have a new sibling who stays home while he or she is off at school. The loss of a close family member can also be a trigger.

Another cause can be the fear of failure in the learning process or in relating to others. Family problems and bullying are also common causes .

What to Do If Your Child Is Afraid to Go to School

Your child isn’t being naughty

The decision to be away from parents—even if only for a few hours—wasn’t your child’s. Children who are afraid to go to school aren’t being naughty. Rather, it’s a situation that requires attention.

During the school years, little ones require assistance to face this process that is loaded with lessons. Their relationships with themselves and others and their future school attendance will depend greatly on how you face this period.

Children may cry, lose their appetite, be irritable, have a hard time sleeping, or get sick. They’re dealing with an irrational fear of going to school, and many parents don’t know how to respond. The poor handling of this situation can produce the social isolation of children .

How can I tell if my child is afraid to go to school?

What should I do if my child is afraid to go to school? First, you need to identify the problem. This emotional unease manifests itself as as pain, fear or dizziness. It can also appear in the form of difficulty sleeping, crying, and lack of interest in group activities. Children may also invent excuses to stay home.

The symptoms of school phobia are varied. Children will do whatever possible to put off going to school. They’ll become very irritable and won’t want to leave home.

My child is afraid to go to school: What should I do?

Children should never feel alone in this process, as this can lead to feelings of abandonment. Children who are afraid to go to school need effective and caring communication. This will increase their level of confidence and maximize their abilities. As a result, you’ll eliminate fears, guilt and lack of security.

You’ll make new friends!

Besides accompanying your children in this process, you should also provide a detailed explanation of the benefits of going to school. For example, remind your children that they’ll make new friends, and do and learn fun things.

Routine and discipline

If your child is afraid of going to school, establishing a routine can be very helpful. Certain aspects like setting times for meals, resting, and sports will be necessary in the long run.

Parents should investigate the motives behind their children’s behavior. Bad grades can cause children to be fearful. In this case, you should help your children with their homework and studies. Look for ways to give your child academic confidence.

Fear of going to school can also coincide with changing to a new school. In this case, you’ll need to be very patient. Accompany your child each day and reinforce progress in a positive way.

What to Do If Your Child Is Afraid to Go to School

Other insecurities

Fear of going to class can produce other sorts of insecurities as well. These include being alone in a room, being away from parents, fear of animals, fear of the dark, etc.

Over time, this fear can cause serious problems in everyday life and require the help of a professional. If you’re dealing with an adolescent who doesn’t want to go to school, treatment will be intense. Fortunately, it usually has positive results.

Accompaniment, understanding, coordination with teachers and/or a professional are all factors that can help your child. Put these actions into practice and your child will be sure to overcome this uncomfortable stage.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.