How to Help Your Child Make the Transition to High School

6 May 2021

Moving up to high school is a big step for any child, and for you as their parent. While you and they might be excited about the prospect of going back to school after the summer holidays, the excitement about making new friends, getting new teachers, and going to a new school can often be overshadowed by stress and anxiety when they are moving up to high school. For new high school students, the sheer size of the school building can often be quite intimidating, and they have to worry about the possible loss of social status among a new and larger group of peers. While it’s undoubtedly easier for kids who are going to be going to high school with some or all of their same friends from primary school, this isn’t always the case and some kids might feel lonely and isolated. And along with all that, many kids find that the transition from primary school to secondary school classes and homework quite overwhelming. So, what can you do to help?

Get to Know the School:

Being familiar with somewhere can help to reduce anxiety, and wherever possible your child should try to spend some time getting to know the school building in order to get to know where the specific rooms are located and have a better idea of what to expect once they start attending. Schools will often provide a school map to newcomers to help them navigate the new space for their first few days but attending open days and open evenings beforehand can make it easier for them to get to know their new school and figure out where key areas like bathrooms, the canteen, and the library are.

Get Together With Friends:

If your child is going to be attending school in your local area, chances are that they are going to know some of the other kids who are starting with them in that year, even if they are not particularly close friends. Perhaps there are some children who live in your local area that your kids know or kids from their year at primary school that they might be able to get together with when starting a new school. The adolescent years are significant in growing up and becoming less reliant on parents, and during this time, peer socialisation becomes even more important, so being a part of a group can make the transition much easier.

Consider Extra Tutoring:

If it is the added workload of attending high school that is worrying your child, or they need to pass an 11+ test to get into a renowned grammar school or independent high school, you might want to consider arranging extra tutoring for them to help them with the transition and make it easier for them to adapt to their new classes. While primary schools tend to do a good job of preparing kids in their final year for their upcoming high school transition, there is additional help and resources available that you can take advantage of such as 11+ tutoring. This can help kids transition into high school and prepare them for important exams like the 11+ test. You can find 11+ tutors near me at Test Teach. They offer 11+ tutoring for children in years four and five to prepare them for the 11+ test and help them get into a better high school, using a range of specialised resources and papers.

Identify Extra-Curricular Activities:

From as early on as possible, you can help your child get more excited about the prospect of attending high school by identifying extra-curricular activities and clubs that are available for them to attend at their new school. Hobby-based groups tend to be smaller than regular classes and often have supportive teachers who are passionate about the subject area, whether your kid is interested in art or playing football. Extra-curricular activities can be one of the most fun parts of attending high school. It is a great way for kids to connect with others who have similar interests to themselves and build a support group at their new school.

Create a Study Schedule:

When it comes to the workload of high school, the more prepared your child is, the better. You can start getting them ready to transition to more studying and homework as early as possible when they are still attending primary school to make the transition easier. Academic success is closely linked with parental engagement and family support, so it’s important to help your child start building good study habits from an early age. Even if there is no assigned homework to complete, you can help them by scheduling a regular time for them to learn about something that interests them.

The prospect of attending high school for the first time can often be stressful for kids. Whether your child is going to be a high school student this year or in the next couple of years, there are several things that you can do as a parent to help them make the transition.

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