Whether you’re still going through a divorce, or you’ve just finished with this challenging process, you are fully aware of the stress and the tension that it involves. Even the most amicable of divorces lead to conflicts, emotional outbursts, and those moments of self-doubt. Now imagine for a moment how you kids feel amidst all this, aware that their lives are changing, but not fully understanding the intricacies of divorce. They might not understand, but they feel.
Children experience all kinds of emotional turmoil during their parent’s divorce, from mild or severe anxiety, all the way to sleepless nights, lack of focus at school, a sense of loneliness, and the need to attract attention, often not in the most acceptable of ways.
Keep Your Divorce From Negatively Impacting Your Child Academically
As a newly divorced mom, there is so much you can do to help your little ones navigate these strange and emotional times of your divorce, and most of all, keep up the good work at school. Here are a few tips to help your kids stay devoted learners despite this bump in the road so that they can pursue the education they want later in life and secure their future.
Make a plan with the teachers
Children don’t just depend on their parents for help and support, which is why you shouldn’t put all the pressure on yourself to help your kids learn and pursue their education through your divorce. In fact, you should go to the headteacher and their other teachers, and see what you can do as a team to encourage your kids to stay devoted to their schoolwork and homework.
Most teachers have some experience in the matter, so the school should help and support your kids when they feel overwhelmed. You can organize one-on-one conversations with the headteacher, to evaluate if your child is exhibiting any signs of anxiety or aggression, and to help pave the way to successful learning of all the school material.
Encourage them to use online materials
Kids in certain countries like New Zealand are encouraged to use the online world to reinforce their knowledge and find more reliable resources where they can prepare for their exams, learn about universities, and build upon what they know. Especially when it’s time for them to obtain their National Certificate of Educational Achievement in preparation for secondary school, young New Zealanders use the internet to learn more efficiently.
To prepare properly, they will look for NCEA past papers on trusted online platforms where students regularly exchange their notes and tests to make this challenge easier to handle. As a newly divorced mom with so much on your plate, you can follow their example and, together with your kids, look for reliable online resources to get them curious about their education and to make it easier for them to pass their tests with real-life examples.
Make time for one-on-one talks
Learning depends so much on your kids’ emotional and mental state. Although there’s no denying that the divorce will affect them in various ways, you should do your best to reassure your kids that they are loved and heard and that no matter how much things change in your home dynamics, they will always have a safe space for growth and curiosity.
In some education systems such as that in Finland, kids get access to free psychological counseling, which means you can also work together with a professional that will devise a strategy to help your children cope. If you have access to such services within your own school system, it would be best for you to involve a psychologist, while at the same time regularly having conversations with your kids to help them process their emotions.
Hire dedicated and trusted tutors
The divorce process itself can be time-consuming, and on top of it all, you have your own job to think about, and a slew of other chores. Even without that, you might not be as proficient at every subject, so you cannot help your kids figure out every math problem, or perhaps every art assignment.
As willing as you are to sacrifice so much to help your kids, you should also recognize when it’s a good moment to hire a tutor for specific subjects. Not everything is about divorce. Often blinded by their own worries and stress, parents will blame this particular event for their kids’ issues, even when that’s not the case. Sometimes kids just experience setbacks in their learning, and it’s up to you to help them overcome those issues.
Decide on a structure with your ex
Newly divorced moms often feel as if it’s all up to you now. If your divorce is caused by issues strictly between you and your former spouse, and they are a good and loving parent, then you need to create a sense of consistency for your kids, together, even though you’re no longer married.
Create a schedule with your ex regarding your kids’ study sessions, homework, parent-teacher meetings, and all other school-related responsibilities. This structure will ensure consistent parenting on both ends so that your kids don’t feel confused and frustrated by the lack of routine. Finally, that kind of shared responsibility will help you both raise resilient kids, capable of handling their responsibilities.
Emotional issues can disrupt your child’s ability to learn, and the stress of divorce is more than enough to affect their progress at school, as well as their motivation and dedication. While you will certainly do your best as a mom to give your kids the safe and healthy environment they need to thrive, you shouldn’t shy away from asking for help from teachers, other parents, and your ex-spouse if you sense that trouble is on the horizon. Put these ideas to use, and you’ll help your kids find their way and become better learners despite the situation.