• Deirdre Brandner

Strategies for children starting Year 7

Tips for Parents

Listen when your child shares their feelings about Year 7

Don’t dismiss their feelings or worries. Acknowledge that is very normal to have these feelings. Explain that it may feel like this for a while because things are new and you don’t know what to expect. (can discuss anxiety , worries , what to say)

Have knowledge of the school

If you have knowledge of the school this allows you to help them present positive information and support them in problem solving situations. Go over the information you are received already, note the names of staff and departments that you and your child can access to answer any concerns or queries.

Be prepared for ups and downs

Change makes us stressed, tired, and emotional. Your child is dealing with lots of change at the same time as they are navigating puberty. There are going to be days when they’ve forgot to charge the laptop, have lost their bus pass and they can’t remember what homework they have. Listen don’t judge, work out a plan with them to solve the problem and help them to get organised so it doesn’t happen again.

Support them with their organisation

Adolescence is the time when the frontal lobe of your child’s brain is still developing. This houses the all important area of executive functioning. New routines, travel arrangements and locker combinations need to be encoded and recalled at the same time as construction in the area that helps with this is still being completed. We may need to help with checklists, timetables and assist in ensuring everything is ready the night before. Have colour coded copies of timetable in their room, near their wardrobe and on the fridge…the colour saves them having to read the font that says which subject it is. Once these routines become familiar this type of support wont be needed.

Tips for Students

Because high school is a new environment it feels different.

When anything is new or unfamiliar we may not always feel we can cope or even like it. Once we adapt to our new setting you will begin to enjoy the positive aspects

Try to be organised, it will make life easier

No one likes wasting time getting organised but it will make things way less stressful. Try getting up early, having a plan, or schedule this will help enormously. Make sure you find the balance study and socialising, whether that’s on line or catching up with others.

There is plenty of room for old friends and new ones:

Just because some of your friends are going to different schools there is still plenty of opportunity to keep those friendships going, make the most of things at school like sporting/social opportunities , camp)

Schoolwork is still just schoolwork:

Year 7 maybe a different environment but you are still learning much the same as you did primary school, you get a chance to learn in different ways, do a wider range of subjects

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