If any of us have personalities that are on the shy and quiet side, we can remember being kids and taking the bus to school. There was nothing more nerve-racking than stepping onto the vehicle and searching the many faces to find a friendly person that we could sit beside. If we had friends who took the same route to school, then things were great, but otherwise, we felt a bit lonely.
It's easy for kids to dread the experience of taking the school bus and be filled with nerves. But there are definitely some ways to make this a much better time. Here are 10 tips for shy kids taking the school bus.
10 Go Over Some Conversation Starters
Everyone finds it tough to talk to strangers. They say that small talk is an art, and that's true because kids and adults alike can struggle with what to chat about. While we can smile and say that it's been raining a lot lately, elementary school kids don't exactly talk to each other about the weather.
When your little one is feeling shy about the school bus, you can help them out with some conversation starters. Maybe they can sit next to someone on the bus and ask them what their favorite book or movie is. They can also ask what they did that summer, depending on their age. That should get a friendly conversation going.
9 Talk To Another Mom
Since the school bus picks up kids on the same street and in the same neighborhood, chances are that you know the moms of other kids who will be on the same route.
To help shy kids take the school bus, you can also talk to another mom. If you're friendly with one, you can chat with them about whether your little ones can sit together. It's totally possible that their kid is just as nervous about the bus and would really love having a friend.
8 Put A Good Luck Charm In Their Backpack
Kids love to be comforted by their favorite blankets, stuffed animals, and other toys. You can help them feel better when taking the school bus by putting a good luck charm in their backpack.
Maybe they have a favorite tiny key chain that you can put in there, and they'll feel happy and cozy knowing that it's in there.
7 Help Ease Their Nerves
Most of all, your kid is probably nervous about taking the bus to school, especially if it's the first time that they've done so. You can do some things to help ease their nerves, from talking to them about how everyone gets nervous sometimes and it's totally normal.
You can also make them feel better by saying that every child taking the school bus is going to feel the same way. Once your child knows that everyone has butterflies in their stomach about this new experience, that should bring them some comfort.
6 Teach Them The Route
We all feel better when we know what's happening or where we're going. When we go on a road trip or head to a doctor's appointment in an unfamiliar part of our city or town, for example, we bring a map. (Or look it up on our iPhone, which might be more likely these days.)
Teaching kids the route that the bus will take from home to school is another good way to help shy children become more used to this mode of transportation. When they see familiar spots and can recognize where they are, that will help them a lot.
5 Tell Them What Will Happen At School
Distraction can be the thing that works in certain situations. Is your kid really wracked with nerves about stepping onto the bus and taking it to school?
You can talk to them about what's going to happen once they get to school. You can say that the teacher will meet the kids coming off the bus and they'll go right to their classroom. You can also talk about the upcoming lessons for that day. It'll give them something else to focus on.
4 Teach Them A Game They Can Play By Themselves
On the topic of distraction, what if you teach your kids a game that they can play on their own? Maybe they can count how many other cars they see out the window on the way to school, or how many traffic lights/stop signs.
This can help pass the time on the bus ride much faster, and it'll give them something fun to do that will make the experience a little brighter.
3 Take The Regular Bus Leading Up To The First Day Of School
Sometimes kids get worried about trying new things. Your little one could be concerned about the school bus simply because the bus is so unfamiliar. Maybe they're only been in the car, so it's a big deal.
Taking the bus in your city or town at least a few times before the kick-off of the new school year could be really helpful here. Your kid will get used to this mode of transportation and maybe even think that it's really cool.
2 Focus On The Positives
If your child is really not into the whole taking the bus to school thing, sit down with them and focus on the positive aspects of the experience. You can say that it's going to be fun since it's something new.
You can also say that there will be other children on the bus so it'll be a good chance to make new friends. Even if your kid still isn't sure, they might come around and start viewing the bus as a good thing.
1 Confidence Is The Answer
Overall, when kids are shy, they could be a bit insecure. Maybe your child doesn't feel that they can make new friends on the bus and they're worried about having to sit alone.
When you want to help them feel more comfortable taking the bus to school this fall season, you can help them feel confident by talking to them about being more confident. You can tell them that they have such great traits and that other kids would definitely love to be friends with them. Your child will believe you since you're their mom, and this will help them approach the school bus with a smile.