TELL SO M EO NE
back to school notebook
When my son is stressing out due to an upcoming test, I study with
him. After the study session, we each write
questions and have the
other person try to answer them.
— Christine Smith, Killeen, TX
Pick a spot; make it safe. Establish a standing time and place
where kids can talk freely about their day without interruptions
or repercussions. Make “safe time” about listening only—no
rendering an opinion or offering solutions. Let them vent first.
—Rae Wells, Turner Falls, MA
charms, as they
say. I'll grab a
favorite CD and
play it in the car
on the way to
school or practice.
It really seems to
out of her stress
helps me a little!
2 3 O SEPTEMBER ^ooS BETTER HOMES AND GARDENS
Being organized helps with stress. Kids have a hard time getting
started, so begin with simple changes: Set specific times for
doing homework and also for chilling out, texting friends, etc.
Have her pick out clothes, make her lunch, and gather books
and school items the night before. Our daughter did this and
saw improvement in the first week.
— Terri Procella, Orange, TX
We cook together. As we prepare the food, the kids start to
talk. Usually we have a solution to whatever is bothering them
by the time our meal is ready. It helps keep me up to date on
their lives—and teaches them how to cook.
We keep a bottle of soap bubbles by the front door. I tell my
-year-old to put "bad thoughts” into a bubble. We watch the
bubble blow away and wait for it to pop. It works for older kids,
—Laura McGaffick, Denver, CO
Once or twice ayear= when I know it's not going to interfere
with a test or any other big school event—I give my children
the option of taking a day off. Hey, adults do it; why can’t kids?
Two or three mental health days during the school year can do
a world of good. Just knowing that it’s an option raises their
—Debbie Davis, Cupertino, CA