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First Day of School Blues? Here’s how parents can help.

We’re working through the ways you can help your child through this moment in life.
Published: Aug. 23, 2021 at 6:22 PM CDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - Thousands of kids in the Ozarks spent their first day at school today. And, without a doubt, some of them came home unhappy, stressed or anxious.

On this Live, Life, Well, we’re working through the ways you can help your child through this moment in life. Clinical Psychologist Doctor Jennifer Baker says the first thing you want to do is show empathy for your child’s feelings. You might say something like this, “It sounds like you had a tough day.” Or, you might say, “I know how disappointing that is when you don’t get classes with your friends.” Maybe you say, “I’m so sorry your lunch hour didn’t go better.”

“The second thing you do is you say, what do you think you’re going to do? So, you’re sending that empowering message? Not that I’m going to rush in and fix it, I’m going to ask you, what do you think you’re going to do?” advised Dr. Baker. “There will probably be some whining, crying, whatever in there. And then you say, would you like some ideas?”

Dr. Baker says you don’t have to have all the ideas. But you throw out some ideas. And after every single idea, you stop and ask your child, “how do you think that’ll work?” Bottom line: show them you care and offer encouragement. But recognize they are smart and can figure this out.

If you’d like to hear other parenting advice from Dr. Baker, she has a podcast. You can find it here: https://www.gooddads.com/podcast

To report a correction or typo, please email digitalnews@ky3.com

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