The first day of school is full of change—summer is over and waking up early is the new norm, for starters. But now that many schools will be going back to in-person learning after the pandemic, the experience is a whole new level of transition. In short, kids need your support more than ever before. It’s important that the positive phrases you say to your children become their inner voice.
Kids need to understand four simple things on the first day of school:
- That you are proud of them, and your love is unconditional
- Success is in their control
- School is a way to learn new things and make new friends
- At the end of the day, they get to be with their family
Here are 11 encouraging phrases to say to your child on their first day of school:
1. “You’re capable of anything you set your mind to.”
2. “You don’t have to be the best at everything; you just need to try your best.”
3. “It’s about the journey, not just the destination.
For some children, especially those who are only children, it may be a jarring experience to share the attention of an adult with an entire cohort of students. Teaching your kids to treat others the way they like to be treated will help them put themselves in the shoes of others and avoid lashing out over lack of attention or being mean to someone else because of peer pressure.
5. “Don’t let your peers’ actions affect how you feel about yourself.”
At some point, your child will be on the receiving end of negative comments or behavior. In these instances, it will be helpful for them to know that the actions of a bully say more about the bully than the target.
6. “Every mistake is a lesson.”
Children will forget to study, will forget a homework assignment, they will oversleep or feel moody. It is always important to teach kids that mistakes are lessons that inform us on how to act later on. It also helps them convert disappointment into a positive.
7. “I believe in you and I support you.”
Children need to know their parents have their back. This is essential to a child’s self-esteem and confidence to perform well in school and in their social circles.
8. “Magic happens outside of your comfort zone.”
In life, you don’t grow by sticking to the same habit and routine; therefore, it’s important for children to perform at their peak by stepping outside their comfort zone. Help them rise to the occasion by being comfortable with discomfort.
9. “I’m going to drop you off, then you’ll meet your teacher, and have lunch…”
On the first day of school, children may have zero or very few expectations, so walk them through it to make them feel at ease. Tell them you’re going to drop them, what they’ll do when they get there, how they’ll have playtime, lunchtime and recess time.
10. “I can’t wait to hear about your day.”
This is especially useful if your child is having a hard time saying goodbye. Before they leave, give them something to look forward to after school by offering an activity or a snack to help them get through the day.
11. “Be yourself.”
One of the important phrases a parent can say to their kid on their first day of school is to be themselves. Give your child the confidence to be who they are regardless of what other kids say.