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Transitions can be tough

Do you have a child who doesn’t love Mondays, going back to school after vacations or changing teams? Many kids (and adults) find transitions challenging, as they prefer the safety and security of the known to the uncertainty and fear of what may come. But transitions don’t have to be the stuff of nightmares. Some ways to help:

Preview the space: If your child is heading to a new location, visit the space and walk around. Let their body experience the environment without stimuli and pressure. After a first exposure, we tend to not be in fight-or-flight mode.

Listen: Ask your child about what might be fun, tricky or worrisome about the transition. Having kids talk through concerns and outcomes can give them tools to navigate the uncertainty.

Take a buddy: When kids have a peer they trust or are familiar with to go with them, the transition can be less difficult or frightening. Having a friend gives many children an anchor in an unknown environment.

Purpose: Together, identify a task or role your child might have in their new environment. Having a purpose distracts the brain from worry.

Be positive: Celebrate accomplishments, grit and perseverance. Acknowledge your child when they have built skills and overcome fears, as this lays the foundation for future courage.

Transitions may never be your child’s favorite activity, but with some thoughtful planning and care you can make them less stressful for everyone.


Brought to you by:

Anna Marie Gosser

Santiam Christian Elementary Principal

541-745-5524 x 243


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