Well-Being//

Elementary School Students Are Stressed, Too. Here’s How to Help Them Cope.

9-year-old Tiana Sirmans explains that between schoolwork, extracurriculars, and a social life, the pressures facing kids her age can take a toll.

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Did you know that students can get just as stressed as adults? It’s true! Students spend a lot of time at school, and there are so many different things they worry about that may cause them stress. Part of the problem is that students don’t know how to relax themselves when they get upset or frustrated. When kids get upset and frustrated, they can’t focus, so they become unhappy and stressed. Kids as young as elementary school students often get stressed, and it all starts with bullying and schoolwork.

Bullying is a big cause of stress in students. It can cause students to be depressed and to be scared to go to school. When kids are picked on and teased all the time, it can also make the student feel alone and cause them to be stressed. Sometimes people that bully others do it because they are frustrated and stressed. They don’t know how to get their frustrations out in a positive way, so they take it out on others. 

Another cause for stress in elementary school students is schoolwork. Students have lots of tests in school, and even have important state testing that happens throughout the year. Many kids do not like taking tests, or they just aren’t great at taking them, so they get very stressed when it’s time to take them. Sometimes kids even cry and get really upset when they must take tests. Schoolwork also stresses students out because when kids don’t know what they are doing, they get upset and embarrassed. The students will then shut down and not even try at all. 

Ways to help reduce stress in elementary school students:

Exercise: When kids have plenty of exercise, it helps them get out their frustrations.  

Plenty of rest: Getting plenty of rest is really important because it lets students’ bodies and minds relax and gives them a chance to get ready for the next day. 

Healthy meals: Students need to have healthy meals during the day to help them focus and feel great. It is really hard to concentrate and learn when you are hungry. Plus, food is great for your brain. 

Meditation: When kids are stressed, it helps if they know how to relax. Meditation helps teach students to relax and clear their minds throughout the day so they can focus on learning. 

Talk about feelings: Often, kids are embarrassed or too shy to tell adults how they are feeling because maybe they don’t want to get someone else in trouble, or for the problem to become worse. It would help if kids knew that it was OK for them to be upset or nervous, but to also be able to talk to someone about how they feel so they can feel better. 

Breaks: Students should have breaks throughout the day to give them a chance to think positive thoughts and get themselves together. They don’t have to be long breaks, but recess and quiet time really help break up the day from all the learning that students do. 

The next time a student tells you they are stressed, believe them. It really is possible. There are so many things that kids deal with while in school, and they may not always know how to handle it in a positive way. If we all work hard to help students find ways to help deal with stress, it will help get rid of bullying, help students learn more, and help them have more fun. Even finding just one way to help reduce stress in elementary school students will help kids learn and be happy in school. And the teachers will love it too!

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