S for Separation Anxiety: Positive Behaviour Support

Whether it’s the first day of childcare, preschool, kindergarten, returning to school after a long break, being left with a new babysitter, or going on a playdate it’s natural for children and teenagers to experience some degree of fear, worry, and unease as they transition to another environment with different activities and people. For most children, the fear, worry, and unease fades away after a few days or a couple of weeks, and they manage to settle into the new environments smoothly. However, for others the separation anxiety that accompanies the transition persists consistently for four weeks or longer.

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Separation anxiety affects everyone involved, and the child who has separation anxiety requires help to learn positive ways of behaving and managing their emotions. While childcare, preschool, kindergarten, or school cannot address all the factors that contribute to the separation anxiety outside of their environment, they can play an important role in addressing some of the factors that may contribute to the separation anxiety.  

Based on the evidence-based approach of Positive Behaviour Support (PBS), S for Separation Anxiety is a step-by-step guide that will help you develop a step-by-step comprehensive PBS plan for childcare, preschool, kindergarten, or school setting. You will learn how to do the following:

  1. ASSESS: Identify the reasons contributing to separation anxiety,
  2. MANAGE: Respond appropriately when the child has difficulty separating, and
  3. PREVENT: Address any setting related triggers that could exacerbate the separation anxiety by tailoring the activity, environment, and interactions to help ease the separation.

Use the practical tools (checklists, forms, and strategies) provided to develop comprehensive PBS plans that can be used to support children of all ages consistently in all settings. This invaluable resource is useful for parents, caregivers, childcare educators, primary and secondary educators, supervisory, allied health professionals, and mental health professionals.

Download Accompanying Forms Resource