University of Illinois Extension

School Stress

What are your memories of your school days? Do you remember school as fun, boring, exciting, a time to be with friends? Some children experience a great deal of stress associated with school.

What would you say might be some things that trigger school stress?

Possible answers

  • being bullied
  • having work incomplete or turning work in late
  • not knowing the answer
  • being slow in sports
  • not having fashionable clothes (having out-of-date clothes)
  • losing papers and books
  • having inadequate school supplies

What are some of the symptoms of stress in children?

Possible answers

  • irritability
  • depression
  • impulsive behavior
  • fear, anxiety, worry
  • sleep problems
  • nervousness
  • headaches

How can we help children deal with and overcome school related stress?

Possible answers

  • have realistic expectations for the child
  • teach them some simple relaxation techniques
  • help them identify their learning style and ways to learn information
  • provide nutritious meals
  • get plenty of sleep
  • cut down on chaos at home--where's my shoe, my book bag, etc.
  • don't over commit the child with too many extra activities
  • manage time wisely
  • spend time having fun
  • prepare for tests and discussions
  • be available to listen to the child