The Ultimate Guide for Managing Back to School Anxiety

Is your student nervous about going back to school? Check out Tutor Doctor’s guide to managing back to school anxiety!

Analyze the source(s) of stress.

Many students generalize a mentality of “I dislike going back to school” without really digging into why this is the case. A good place to start is to analyze the previous year – what went wrong? In many cases, students are able to pinpoint specific projects, classes, and social experiences that were the primary sources of their stress throughout the school year.

Once you’ve identified the sources for back to school anxiety, it’s time to start addressing them!

Common Back to School Stressors

1. Get organized.

The number one reason students get nervous about going back to school is a looming feeling of “getting back into gear.” Let’s face it – after months away from school, it’s common for students to have their materials jumbled together (likely still mixed with last year’s assignments). Take some time to get organized prior to starting the school year! Getting (and staying) academically organized is one of the best ways to ease back to school anxiety:

2. Address academic concerns.

In many cases, students are worried about returning to the classroom if the previous year didn’t go as well as they’d hoped. Nobody likes receiving a bad score, and it’s very common for students to feel like they never really understood a topic completely (“Yeah, I never really got fractions.”). Learning gaps are often the cause of academic issues, and addressing these foundational cracks in a student’s learning can greatly ease school related anxiety:

3. Get your sleeping schedule on track.

After months away from school, students are used to sleeping in and staying up late. We recommend students adjust their sleeping schedules a week or two before school starts, as it can be difficult to suddenly start waking up early in the morning again. In addition, students should ensure that they are getting quality sleep each night:

4. Prepare for big transitions.

Facing major changes is a common source of stress for students. The transition to middle school can be difficult for elementary students, and high school students have their own concerns with college applications in the near future. Here are our tips to prep for big transitions:

5. Talk about personal fears.

In some cases, sources of back to school anxiety aren’t due to academic reasons. It’s not always easy to navigate social situations, and students should talk to a trusted individual about the concerns that are bothering them specifically. Here are some common back to school fears:

A tutor can help pinpoint the sources of back to school anxiety and address them directly. Find a tutor near you!