Do you remember your final years in secondary school? For some these were the most exciting times, others it may have bought on anxiety and other simply could not wait to finish school and get on with life there after! Years 10/11 are pinnacle in a young person’s life. They will be thinking about their
potential careers, some in year 11 may start working, new experiences and may have a mix of emotions as their school journey draws closer to an end.
We are sure you must have your own secondary school years memories and experiences. However, today we are turning our attention to those who are in years 10/11 and letting you know best ways to connect!
Why should I want to connect anyway?
I’m sure you can pinpoint a time in your life where you either really connected with someone older than you, or you can pinpoint a time when it would have been extremely beneficial for yourself if you did have someone you connected with. That’s why it’s important to make the effort where we can as adults to extend a helping hand to children where we can perhaps by mentorship and amongst our communities in general.
Key Ways To Connect With children in KS4
1. Ask questions!
Despite mostly getting one word answers from your teenager, it’s still very worth it keeping up with asking questions! Just like building any relationship, questions are what starts off and keeps conversations. Even just simply asking about their studies can show that you care, which can start to create the space of a safe environment. Asking questions based around their interest and hobbies is a great way to get a conversation flowing. You can ask questions on: their studies, their friends, the latest Tiktok news, whatever may come to mind that you think will spark a conversation!
Tip: Although some young people give very vague answers to adults questions, they will always remember you asking. So don’t worry if you aren’t getting much back, and keep at it! Overtime you may just build that strong connection you are hoping for.
2. Spend Quality time
Quality time is a great way of showing our love and care to those dearest to us and it is no different when it comes to connecting with a child in KS4. Plan a time where you will spend uninterrupted quality time with your teenager. Why not suggest different activities you could do together and get them to choose their best option? If you know your teenager has interests in a niche area, get involved! This will mean a lot to them in the long run. Some of things you could do are: a cinema trip, a niche exhibition, a theatre trip, a set of games at the park, there’s so much scope here so be sure to get creative if you wish!
Tip: remember the key word here is quality. Be sure to give your full attention over and minimise as many distractions for yourself as possible I.e put your phone away!🙂
3. Show up
Can you remember an important event you had when you were in your final years of school? Maybe a sports event, a recital or end of year production to name a few. If so, you can probably also remember how comforting it was to see a loved one in the audience and how crushing it can be if no one was there to support you. This can lead to feelings of low self esteem and be triggering in some cases. One of the best ways to connect with your child at all stages, but most defiantly in their final schools years, is to show up as much as you can. These are their final years in school that you won’t ever be able to get back. It may be inconvenient at times, however just making the effort can really go a long way. In years to come, your presence at certain events will forever be remembered, cherished and valued.
When we ask questions, take time out for quality time and show up as much as possible for young people in KS4, this creates the space to connect in both the short and long term.
We hope this blog has helped you think of ways to better connect to your child in KS4. As always have useful links below and you can get in touch with us here.
Useful links on Coronavirus (COVID-19)
NHS Information on Coronavirus (COVID-19) – https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/
UK Government Information on Coronavirus (COVID-19) – https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus
Useful Links For Mental Health
Emergency Mental Health Help
You call UK emergency services by dialling 999
Take care great care of yourself and stay safe