Why Some Kids Don’t Look Forward to Summer
If you are noticing strange behaviors in your students as the end of school approaches, you are not alone.
First – consider what you are experiencing yourself: You have increased pressure to complete curriculum and measure performance, colleagues you’ve worked with for years may be retiring or leaving, your own kids may be transitioning to a new school next year, or your mind is occupied with all the things you need to do before summer, and you may be experiencing some transitional stress as well.
Our students are experiencing these same stressors with additional things going on in their little lives that you may have not even thought about. It’s important to have a sense of empathy when it comes to your student behaviors along with the end of year madness.
Some things to consider as summer approaches:
- Many “at risk” students may not be looking forward to summer break
- Some students may not know what they are doing this summer
- We know that 2 nutritional meals were guaranteed during the school year, this may not be a reality for some students during summer
- Students may not know how to cope with anxiety over the above things
- Kids become more over-scheduled as the weather is nicer and families plan more and more activities
- They can sense the stress that you may be feeling and may act out because of it
- Students may be sleeping less as it gets darker later
- Stress around many of their friends leaving to other schools next year and coming back to school not knowing anyone
- Some students may be home all day during the summer by themselves, or with a sibling, not knowing what to do
Obviously, each child will experience the above in a different way. But being aware that our kids are experiencing stress may help us manage through the social/emotional needs differently these last few weeks of school. Keep in mind that WE (the teacher) are the single most important factor in students’ stress level at school. Remember, this too shall pass, and soon you’ll be starting off another new school year with a fresh roster and attitude, even though this freshness seems a distant memory.
When you seek to understand the “why’s” behind student behavior you can then understand what they need in order to overcome the issues they are experiencing. Sometimes all they need is a caring, smiling face, reminding them it will all be ok!
What have you noticed about student behaviors and attitudes in the last few weeks of school?
Any tricks to get through the madness?