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Regression in School-Aged Children: How to Support Their Academic Progress

Updated: Oct 3, 2023


As parents, caregivers, and educators, it's not uncommon to witness periods of regression in school-aged children. Regression refers to a temporary decline in previously acquired skills or behaviors.


Whether it's a dip in academic performance, social skills, or even emotional well-being, understanding how to address and support regression is crucial for helping children navigate these challenges and continue their academic progress. In this blog post, we will explore the common causes of regression in school-aged children and provide actionable strategies to support their educational journey.


Understanding the Causes of Regression

  1. Transitional Periods: Major life changes such as starting a new school, moving to a different grade, or dealing with family adjustments can trigger feelings of insecurity and stress, leading to regression.

  2. Emotional Stress: Children, just like adults, experience emotional stress. This can be due to various factors such as friendship issues, family problems, or personal struggles, and it can impact their ability to focus on academics.

  3. Learning Challenges: If your child encounters difficulty with a particular subject or concept, they might experience regression as frustration builds up, affecting their overall academic performance.

Strategies to Support Academic Progress

  1. Open Communication: Maintain an open and non-judgmental line of communication with your child. Encourage them to share their feelings and concerns about school. This can help identify underlying issues causing regression.

  2. Establish Routine: Children thrive on routine and structure. Creating a consistent daily routine can provide them with a sense of stability and security, reducing feelings of uncertainty.

  3. Positive Reinforcement: Celebrate even the smallest achievements. Positive reinforcement and praise can boost your child's self-esteem and motivate them to make progress.

  4. Individualized Support: If your child is struggling with a specific subject, consider providing additional help. This could involve hiring a tutor, seeking assistance from the teacher, or using online educational resources.

  5. Emotional Support: Address any emotional stress your child may be experiencing. Offer guidance on how to cope with difficult emotions and provide a safe space for them to express themselves.

  6. Encourage Interests: Help your child engage in activities they are passionate about outside of school. Pursuing hobbies and interests can boost their confidence and overall well-being.

  7. Collaboration with Teachers: Maintain open communication with your child's teachers. They can provide insights into your child's behavior and performance at school, allowing for a more holistic approach to support.


How Play Therapy can help.


Play therapy is a form of psychotherapy specifically designed for children. It recognizes that children often communicate and process their emotions through play rather than words. In the context of regression, play therapy can help your child explore their feelings, fears, and anxieties in a non-directive and non-threatening way. Play therapy provides a remarkable avenue for school-aged children to confront and navigate regression. By engaging in play, your child will process their emotions, develop coping strategies, and regain lost skills. With the guidance of trained play therapists, children can overcome regression, develop a stronger sense of self, and embark on a journey of healing and growth, both academically and emotionally.


Regression in school-aged children is a natural response to various challenges they encounter on their academic journey. As caregivers and educators, our role is to provide them with the necessary tools and support to navigate these challenges successfully. By understanding the causes of regression and implementing strategies to address them, we can empower children to overcome setbacks and continue progressing in their education. Remember, every child is unique, and finding the right approach may require patience, flexibility, and a deep commitment to their well-being and growth.


Do you think your Teen or Child could benefit from therapy? Speak to a qualified Play therapist to learn how your Teen or Child could benefit from play therapy, Click here to get in touch today, or if you want to know if Play Therapy could be suitable for your Teen or Child, click here to take our quiz!




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