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The homeroom teacher changed the seating assignment for my child, because one of their other teachers complained to their homeroom teacher that my child was always talking during class time.

My student now feels stressed out, is having difficulty with studying, and isn't comfortable with now having a boy partner.

How can I help my student make the best out of this situation?

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    I am little confused is this your child or your student or both? Also, is the stressor the fact that this person got moved to a different spot? or the boy (s)he is now assigned with? or both? This can widely change the answer and it gives us a little more clarity into an answer your looking for. – Asterisk May 8 '15 at 1:09
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I would ask for a parent teacher conference, and explain to the teacher how your child feels. Perhaps a compromise would be possible. Could you brainstorm with your student (your daughter, if I understood right) to find out the names of a few students she feels she could partner well with? On the one hand, we want her to be comfortable; on the other hand we don't want her to be too comfortable and want to do a lot of chatting!

I have a talkative son, and he pairs best with a student who is serious about schoolwork, and very quiet; but who is friendly during breaks.

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This is an opportunity to assist your child in learning how to cope with change and with situations that are uncomfortable. As parents, it is so tempting to jump in and try to relieve our child's stress (and certainly there are times when stress is extreme and needs some intervention), but this does not serve the child's overall growth and social development.

Things I would try:

  • Encourage your child to talk about specific stresses this causes for her. Just talking about it may help to relieve some of the stress.
  • Ask her about worse case scenarios and help her think through what she could do in those situations. For example, if she is worried that the boy might tease her, work with her on strategies for that possibility.
  • Help her to realize that her situation is a consequence of her own behavior, and that changing her behavior might lead to a better consequence in the future.
  • Don't fix this for her. Instead, use encouraging phrases regarding her own ability to cope with this situation. For example: "I hear that you aren't happy about your new seat, but you are clever and resourceful, and I know you will figure out how to handle this."
  • Empathize. Agree with her that her new seat assignment isn't as fun as her old one.
  • Give her some perspective. Share stories from your own experience that might relate. Also help her to see her teacher's perspective - her excessive talking caused the teacher to have a problem that needed solving.

Allowing your daughter to have this uncomfortable experience and learn to cope with it is the first step in a long life of overcoming small obstacles and becoming more competent and confident.

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