10 Effective Strategies to Help Kids and Teens Overcome Back-to-School Stress

10 Effective Strategies to Help Kids and Teens Overcome Back-to-School Stress


The back-to-school season can be both exciting and stressful for kids and teenagers. After a long summer break, they may feel anxious about the academic challenges, social dynamics, and routine changes that come with returning to school. As parents and caregivers, supporting and guiding them through this transitional period is crucial to ensure a smooth and positive start to the new academic year.

Here are ten effective strategies to help kids and teens overcome the stress of going back to school:


  • 1. Open Communication: Encourage open and honest conversations about their feelings and concerns about returning to school. Create a safe space to share their worries and validate their emotions. Doing so will strengthen your bond and show that you support them through this transition.

Communicate with them  - Reduce Back to School Stress Tips

  • 2. Gradual Adjustment: Help them ease into the school routine gradually. Begin by re-establishing consistent bedtimes and waking times a week or two before school starts. This gradual adjustment will make the first few days of school less daunting and tiring.

Healthy Routines  - Reduce Back to School Stress Tips

  • 3. Set Goals and Expectations: Sit down with your child and set realistic academic and personal goals for the upcoming school year. Encourage them to express their aspirations and discuss how they can work towards achieving them. Clear goals will provide a sense of purpose and motivation.

Setting Goals  - Reduce Back to School Stress Tips

  • 4. Reconnect with Friends: Arrange playdates or meet-ups with their friends before school starts. Reconnecting with familiar faces can help alleviate social anxiety and remind them that they’re not alone in their feelings.

Group of School Friends- Reduce Back to School Stress Tips

  • 5. Visit the School: If possible, visit the school together before the first day. Walk around the campus, locate their classrooms, and meet their teachers. Familiarizing themselves with the environment can reduce feelings of uncertainty.

Empty School Yard - Reduce Back to School Stress Tips

  • 6. Organize and Plan: Help your child organize their school supplies, backpack, and locker. Creating a well-structured plan will give them a sense of control and prevent last-minute stressors.

School Backpack - Reduce Back to School Stress Tips

  • 7. Time Management Skills: Teach your child effective time management skills. Show them how to prioritize tasks, set study schedules, and balance schoolwork with extracurricular activities. Learning to manage time efficiently will reduce feelings of overwhelm.

Prioritize Tasks  - Reduce Back to School Stress Tips

  • 8. Encourage Healthy Habits: Ensure your child maintains a balanced diet, gets enough sleep, and engages in physical activity. A healthy lifestyle contributes to better focus, improved mood, and overall well-being.

Healthy Habits - Reduce Back to School Stress Tips

  • 9. Practice Relaxation Techniques: Introduce relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, meditation, or yoga to help them cope with stress and anxiety. These practices can be powerful tools for managing emotions during challenging times.

Relax and Meditate  - Reduce Back to School Stress Tips

  • 10. Be Patient and Empathetic: Finally, be patient and empathetic throughout the back-to-school transition. Understand that your child may experience ups and downs during this period. Offer support, encouragement, and reassurance when they need it most.
  • Have Patience as a Parent - Reduce Back to School Stress Tips


Remember, every child is unique, and what works for one may not work for another. Be attentive to their individual needs and adapt these strategies accordingly. Encourage a positive attitude towards the new school year, and celebrate their successes, no matter how small. With your support and guidance, they will develop the resilience and confidence needed to overcome back-to-school stress and embrace the academic journey ahead.


Reach out to our team if your child is worried about going back to school.


Are your children feeling overwhelmed by school stress, or are your teenagers facing academic pressure?

We understand the challenges that come with the back-to-school season, and our practice is here to support you and your family. The Therapy Centre has a team of caring and experienced professionals dedicated to helping children and teens navigate the academic journey with confidence and resilience. Our tailored approach aims to address their unique needs, offering practical strategies to manage stress and build essential life skills.


At The Therapy Centre we are comprised of dedicated clinicians with extensive training including psychologists, registered social workers, psychotherapists, and a dietitian. We are a full-service practice that works with children, teens, adults, seniors, couples, and families.


Our offices are located across the Greater Toronto and Hamilton area, at 2525 Old Bronte Road in Oakville, 849 Upper Wentworth Street in Hamilton, and a NEW location in Toronto at 1849 Yonge St (Yonge and Davisville). We offer both in-person and  Virtual Telehealth services including secure phone sessions and videoconferencing.

Reach out to our team today at (289) 291-0205 or info@thetherapycentre.ca.

10 Effective Strategies to Help Kids and Teens Overcome Back-to-School Stress - Article by The Therapy Centre with locations in Toronto, Oakville, Hamilton and Virtually -Psychological & Counselling Services - Group of Teens in School Setting