Tips For Conquering Those Back-To-School Battles

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — School is back in session and sometimes the day can be as bumpy as the bus ride.

From getting dressed to saying goodbye to doing homework, CBS2’s Vanessa Murdock has expert advice for conquering back-to-school battles.

Five-year-old Andrew said he doesn’t have homework yet. When asked if he’d do school work without a problem, Andrew shrugged his shoulders.

To make it easier on everyone, Dr. Jamie Howard, a clinical psychologist at Child Mind Institute, recommends getting your child involved in setting up a space dedicated to getting it done.

“I’ve had some parents force their kids to be in one spot and they don’t want to be there so make a plan,” she explained. “The more it’s a collaborative process, the less of a battle you’ll have.”

The space should be comfortable, distraction-free and mutually agreed upon. To have more meaningful conversations, Howard said to keep two things in mind: timing and type of question.

“A lot of kids need to take a breath or decompress,” she said.

Howard said it’s best to wait a little while until they’ve settled at home and to ask specific open-ended questions.

“Say something like ‘what did you learn in math class?’ ‘Who did you sit with at lunch?'” she said.

CBS2’s Murdock said even she had problems with her daughter while preparing for school.

“My daughter didn’t like her outfit, kept repeating, ‘I look ridiculous.’ With no time to change, she stepped onto the bus – tears still dampening her cheeks,” she said.

Experts said to try to be calm during meltdown moments and to be encouraging while not giving in.

“Be light and calm, but at the same time firm,” Howard added.

School isn’t optional, so it’s best to conquer these battles now.

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