When a child starts high school, they are suddenly becoming one of the youngest and newest kids at school all over again –– a small fish in a big pond! The transition between Year 6 and Year 7 is one of the biggest jumps in a child’s life and is a very important milestone. This can easily become a daunting time for students and parents alike.

Starting Year 7 poses many new challenges, but also exciting opportunities. It comes with a number of mixed feelings. Unfortunately for many Grade 6 students, 2020 was marred with school closures and remote learning due to the pandemic and the overall impact of this is still unknown. Studies have shown that the mental health of this age group already appeared to be deteriorating before coronavirus hit and it is expected that cases of anxiety and depression will be on the rise.

For many students regular orientation activities at the end of 2020 were less than ideal. Therefore, many students may be feeling a little bit more anxious than usual about their expectations of starting Year 7 and finding their place in the “big pond”. As your child grasps new skills and engages in new study practices, it is important for parents to be supportive, but also realistic in their expectations. Parents and students can easily become overwhelmed during this time of transition, but there are a number of strategies that can be implemented to start things off on the right foot!