June 2019 Letter from Principal Jane Murphy

­­June 3, 2019

Dear Locke School Families,

This letter is about talking to children about the end of the school year.

While many children look forward to summer vacation, the end of the school year can elicit complicated feelings in children. Children come to school every day and spend many hours with their teachers and friends. They become attached to the adults in their school environment, and connected to their peers in deep ways. Saying goodbye may feel sad. Children usually feel a sense of ease and comfort in their current classrooms having become familiar with their everyday routines and environments. Thinking about beginning a new grade, with new teachers and new peer groups, can bring up a lot of anxiety for children. Children worry about what it will be like, will it be too hard, and will they have friends? All of these reactions are very normal. Some children may share their feelings with you and some children may choose not to. As we come closer to the end of the school year, we will be talking with our classrooms about their thoughts, feelings, and ideas about the end of the year. We will be reading books, sharing memories, and counting days so the end will not feel like a surprise. We are committed to having a good goodbye. Some families have asked how they can support their children as they prepare to end school and move into the summer. Here are a few ideas:

  • Ask children how they feel about the end of the school year. Don’t make any assumptions. You can say, “So, it will be the end of school soon. How are you feeling about that?”
  • Be supportive. If kids express that they are sad, or scared, for example, you can say, “Yeah, the end of the school year can be hard. I understand.”
  • Ask teachers for book recommendations. We have lots of good books to help kids with saying goodbye, and other themes related to the end of the school year.
  • Kids may show some regression around this time. It’s completely normal! Don’t worry if your child is acting “younger” or more disorganized. We see this every year in every school. It is just part of how kids act at the end of the year.
  • Children who have had significant loss in their lives (the death of a loved one, a recent move, family illness, etc…) may have a particularly hard time saying goodbye.

We are here to talk and support you and your child. Let us know if we can be of any help in navigating this transition.

Sincerely,

Jane Murphy, Principal