Make Your Child's Teacher Your Ally ( Emotional Health )

Make Your Child’s Teacher Your Ally

You know how your child behaves at home, but do you really know what he or she is like at school? A child’s mental health is an important factor in his or her ability to do well in school.

Mental health problems can affect any child — even elementary or preschool children. These problems are more common than you may think. One in five children has a diagnosable mental, emotional, or behavior problem that can lead to school failure, family discord, violence, or suicide. Help is available, but two-thirds of children with mental health problems are not getting the help they need. Your child’s teacher should be your ally when it comes to your child’s mental health. He or she can help you decide if your child may need help. Here are a few questions you should discuss with your child’s teacher.

Does my child seem angry most of the time? Cry a lot? Overreact to things?

Does my child destroy school property or do things that are life threatening? Harm other children on the playground? Break rules over and over again?

Does my child appear sad or anxious much of the time? Show an unusual concern about grades or tests?

Does my child seem obsessed about how he looks? Often complain about headaches, stomachaches, or other physical problems — especially when it’s time to take a test or participate in classroom social activities?

Is my child unable to sit still or focus her attention? Make decisions? Respect your authority as a teacher?

Has my child lost interest in things usually enjoyed, such as sports, music, or other school activities? Suddenly started avoiding friends?

If you and your child’s teacher answer “yes” to any of these questions, and the problem seems persistent or severe, then you need to find out if a mental health problem is contributing to this behavior. It’s not easy for parents to accept that their child may have a problem. Early treatment can help your child succeed in the classroom, but it is important that you seek help.

B-man :wink: