The need for lockdown and with the pandemic finally subsiding, kids are flocking back to school. With classrooms being full of learners and some of them being freshmen, it is understandable to be anxious. Most students find it apprehensive about deciding what the uncertainty of return may mean for them both socially and academically.
Research shows that almost 7.1% of the children in the United States between the age of 3-17 suffer from anxiety. Out of which, more than 1 student in every 3 students is diagnosed with behavioural problems and depression. Anxiety is the most commonly diagnosed mental disorder among students, which can cause severe changes in the child. There can be changes in the way they behave. Handle emotions and even learn. Anxiety can cause distress and depression that can have adverse effects on their learning patterns and Academic Essay Help performance. While emotional and social effects of being anxious can be explored, the fluctuations in academic productivity are not too easy to realize.
Children are prone to anxiety just like adults. The only problem is that they lack words to express their feelings and hence their parents are completely unaware of it. While students have to deal with anxiety, it can have alarming effects on their learning and other aspects of life. So, if you are thinking about how anxiety can affect a student's performance, read on to gain some valuable insights. Additionally, look into some tips that can be helpful to prevent this.
What Is Anxiety In Students?
Anxiety is an emotion that is meant to cause fear, alertness, and physical changes like rapid heart rate. In students' anxiety can cause them to feel panic, worry, or an uncomfortable nervousness. They might even feel restlessness, churning stomach, light-headedness, and even nausea.
They often feel anxious before stressful situations like exams, tests, or assignments that drive them to take practical steps to make their performance better. However, being overly anxious can do more harm than good. A child experiencing anxiety can be more drawn to worrisome thoughts instead of focusing on essential tasks like completing or studying.
5 Ways in Which Child’s Learning Is Impacted by Anxiety
Anxiety can impair a child’s learning in a multitude of ways. Sometimes they are unable to control their thought and hence fall into uncomfortable situations. Take a look at some ways how academic performance can be hindered by anxiety.
It Makes Them Uncomfortable
One of the significant ways in which anxiety interferes with a child's learning is that it makes them feel uncomfortable. As a result, they feel distracted as they are more consumed with their worrying thoughts and are unable to focus on their studies. Take a look at how being uncomfortable can be less fruitful:
- It makes the student distracted, which can lead to fidgeting thoughts or behavioral changes that make it difficult to concentrate.
- It leads to impaired concentration and can make them feel estranged or isolated at times.
- Being overly anxious pushes the students to engage less with their learning, making them less participative and dampening their education.
It Affects Memory
Research shows that anxiety can have a very tangible effect on memory. People who are anxious have a hard time retaining information and have this discomfort that prevents them from comprehending things. It also overrides their cognitive function. Here are some of the ways in which it can affect memory:
- You are unable to recall key details about your tasks, studies, schedules, etc.
- You forget significant events like assignment submission dates, exam schedules, etc., that can lead to poor grades.
- You have trouble remembering essential tasks like daily chores, to-do lists, where you have kept your study essentials, notes, etc.
It Impairs Thought Process
Being anxious does not only impair your memory but also meddles with the entire thought process. Anxious thoughts take precedence over other cognitive functions that make a student unable to think clearly and coherently. Therefore, it makes it challenging for them to comprehend the lessons, concepts, and topics. Here is how it affects the thought processes of a student:
- It floods your brain with stress hormones that tell your body something dangerous is going to happen, and you need to prepare to cope with a fight. Hence, you lose your sense of calm and feel overwhelmed.
- It provokes your brain to be hyperactive to threats, and you feel scared to even under non-threatening situations.
- It makes it hard for your brain to think rationally and lose the balance between fantasy and logical response.
It Causes Avoidance
Kids naturally don't want to feel depressed or anxious all the time. As a result, they sometimes go to great lengths to avoid such situations that make them feel this way. This leads to homework procrastination, skipping school, avoiding active participation in class, etc. In addition, they are more likely to fill their brain with excuses rather than face the challenges head-on. Take a look at the ways in which anxiety can cause avoidance:
- It drives the students to procrastinate tasks, assignments, and chores that make them feel anxious as a coping mechanism.
- They develop passive-aggressiveness that makes them act stubborn and express sullenness towards any demands that threaten them.
- It gives rise to ruminations that magnify the negative thoughts and increase stress leading to feeling powerless and helpless.
It Upsets Students
The true specialty of stress is to make students upset. Some situations are so difficult for children to identify and cope up they end up being sad or depressed. They find it hard to express what this discomfort is, making them hard to communicate. Here are some ways in which anxiety can upset students:
- They are unable to relax and always feel like staying on edge.
- They are unable to handle uncertainty and are often indecisive.
- They excessively worry about situations that do not require much attention.
Some Tips for Parents And Teachers To Help Students
Anxiety can be a complicated emotion to deal with, especially when you are alone or isolated. Most students find it tricky to express this feeling and often feel scared to communicate about this. However, certain behavioural signs can make parents and teachers identify this. Here are specific tips that teachers and parents can employ to help their children deal with anxiety.
- Normalize mistakes and provide reassurance with more positive statements.
- Build confidence with continuous praising and appraisal, reminding them of their effort and how well they did from time to time.
- Be proactive and have difficult discussions with your children like divorce, global pandemic, or any other situation that might hamper their peace.
- Be warm, approachable, and an active listener so that they can talk to you.
- Don’t sympathize but empathize.
- Allow extra time and make adjustments for the task they don’t want to do.
- Enable them to practice mindfulness and encourage confidence and boost self-esteem.
Anxiety can play a very significant role in a child's learning and understanding process. Not being able to deal with it can lead them to poor scores and lower their academic performance. Look into the reasons and tips mentioned above to help your child overcome anxiety. Also, remember that providing a calm environment will enable your child to improve their potential. This will allow them to do well in school.
Agatha Brown hailing from Texas, United States is a psychiatrist who deals with people having anxiety issues. Additionally, she also served as an academic counsellor for 6 years and is currently associated with MyAssignmenthelp.com. She helps dreaded students overcome anxiety and complete their assignments.