As a parent, you know that your child is capable of great things. But what if he or she has a mental health condition? That doesn’t mean that your child won’t be able to succeed in school, but it does mean that you need to partner with teachers, administrators, and other parents to help create the best possible learning environment for your child. The following tips will help:
Create a Support Network That Includes Your Child
Involve your child in the process. Parents often feel they should be the ones to help their children—and you are an important part of that support! Involving your child in solutions and plans can help them feel like they’re involved and have a voice, which will give them more incentive to stick with it.
Encourage involvement from other adults who are important in your child’s life. They don’t have to be mental health professionals or specialists. Perhaps there’s a teacher, coach, or mentor who is especially supportive of your child—invite them into the conversation as well!
Develop an Action Plan to Help Your Child at School
You should also develop an action plan to help your child at school. This plan will include ways you can help your child with their mental health condition in the classroom and how you can support the teachers and other staff who are working with them.
You should make sure that each of your children’s teachers is aware of the action plan that has been developed for them, as well as how they can best work with you to give your child the best experience possible. It is important to keep communication open between yourself and the school so that both parties are clear on what needs to happen when problems arise or if something doesn’t seem right with your child’s education.
Get on the Same Page as Your Child’s Teachers
One of the best ways to make sure your child is getting the education they deserve is to communicate with their teachers. This can be done in a few different ways:
Make sure you and your child’s teachers are on the same page by communicating in writing or over email regularly. Also, try to set up regular meetings with your child’s teachers so you can speak in person from time to time.
Talk about any issues or struggles that might have an impact on your child’s learning. For example, if your child has an anxiety disorder and feels uncomfortable speaking up in class, it might be best to communicate this when you meet with the teacher at conferences.
To ensure a successful learning environment for your child, also beware of any bullying that they could be experiencing, whether this is on school grounds or through social media. Children with mental health conditions can be more seriously impacted by bullies, and this may also inhibit them from performing well in school. Be sure to stay in touch with your child’s teachers about bullying and communicate with them if you notice signs of bullying outside of school or online.
Help Your Child Succeed in School
One thing you can do for your child is teaching them how to get organized and stay on top of their work. This helps them feel more confident about school, which will lead to better grades and fewer problems. You could also encourage them to participate in extracurricular activities that make them feel good about themselves because these kinds of activities help shield them against depression, anxiety, or other mental health conditions that might be affecting your child from doing well at school or home life.
Another way you can help your child with homework is by helping them understand what they’re learning and why it matters so they’re more likely to retain information when studying for exams later down the road (and as we all know, retaining knowledge will make test-taking go much smoother).
One way you could do this would be by asking questions like “Why was it important for us all together as a class? Why did our teacher want us to learn this?” It may seem like overkill at first but trust me: once they start getting comfortable answering these types of questions confidently then everything else becomes easier!
Adapting for Success in the Classroom
A child’s mental health is just as important as their physical health. With that being said, it is important that children suffering from a mental health condition are cared for properly. Although mental health conditions are very serious illnesses, there are treatment options and lifestyle changes that can be made to allow for a better life.
As a parent, there are various ways to ensure that your child succeeds in school with a mental health condition, including the following:
- Creating a support network that make your child feel safe and valued
- Developing an action plan that is geared toward your child’s success
- Communicating with your child’s teachers, coaches, and administrators
- Helping your child to stay organized and on top of their schoolwork
Although you may worry sometimes, it is important to keep in mind that your child has the ability to succeed in school despite their mental health condition. With the right adaptations, techniques, and support, you can ensure your child’s success in the classroom.
This blog post is meant to be educational in nature and does not replace the advice of a medical professional. See full disclaimer.