Happy May. What is that adage? April showers bring May flowers? As an educator, flowers aren’t the first things that come to mind when you say the word May. Hectic schedules…yes. Long days…yes. Crazy behaviors…yes. Tepid showers and peaceful flowers…not so much. In my experience, May usually triggers storms.

Sophie is our sweet schnauzer. Sweet, loyal and phobic of both men in hats and turbulent weather, she (like many dogs) will hightail it under our bed thirty minutes before any observable storm approaches. Impending weather seems to be her sixth sense. I think kids are the same way. In May, they sense change is approaching, but can’t articulate it. Their externalized behaviors, however, speak loud and clear about their internal anxiety.

My words don’t seem to reassure Sophie nearly as much as my tone and quiet presence. The stronger and calmer I am, the more I seem to have a soothing effect on our poor pup. So, take a lesson from this and don’t agitate the anxiety by talking too much about the upcoming change. “Guys, the school year is almost out and …” “We’ve talked about this; next year, when you are in ____ grade…” Focus on the present, and to the extent possible, keep the schedule consistent and predictable. Kids will be looking for some sense of stability; so in this monthly storm, choose to be the eye.