I Don't Want To Go To School!
Early one morning a mother went to her sleeping son and woke him up.
"Wake up, son. It's time to go to school."
"But why, Mama? I don't want to go to school."
"Give me two reasons why you don't want to go to school."
"One, all the children hate me. Two, all the teachers hate me, ..."
"Oh! that's no reason. Come on, you have to go to school!"
"Give me two good reasons WHY I should go to school?"
"One, you are FIFTY-TWO years old. Two, you are the PRINCIPAL of the school."
— Author unknown
Most parents have heard the words “I don’t want to go to school” before. The joke above reminds us that children are not the only ones anxious about returning to school.
Still, not being liked is a key reason why the return to school leaves students fraught with anxiety. Often students also have fears about the curriculum, worrying about whether they can complete the work set by their teachers. They also worry that they won’t find the curriculum interesting and/or won’t be sufficiently challenged or stretched by the curriculum. The 2020 pandemic, punctuated by restrictions, has students faced with returning to a nontraditional educational format, making further anxiety inevitable.
Forms of Anxiety
Francesca Coltrera, editor of Harvard Medical School’s Health Blog, identifies three forms of anxiety present in children:
• Separation anxiety: Children can be very anxious and upset when parted from parents and caregivers; they refuse to attend camp, sleepovers, or play dates; they worry that bad things will happen to self or loved ones while separated.
• Social anxiety: Anxious children exhibit strong fear of social situations; they are very anxious and self-conscious around others; they...
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