5 Back to School Tips
Summer is nearly gone, and the kids will be back in school before you know it. Help keep your kids calm and your stress low by getting them ready for school early. Here are a few tips to help start the school year off on the right foot.
Figure Out the Routine Early
If your kids have been sleeping in, staying up later, and lounging around all summer, the first day of school is going to be a jolt to the system. To help prepare them for the first day of school, figure out their routine ahead of time. Set the alarm in the morning and have them go to bed a little earlier at night. Establish a routine for the day - beyond video games, watching YouTube videos, or chatting with friends. It won’t be exactly like the school routine but it will help them get used to the idea again.
Make Travel Plans Now
Depending on how old your child is, they may have multiple options for how to get to school. Older kids might drive themselves, catch a ride, or ride the bus. You may have a schedule that lets you drop the kids off at school or at the bus stop. When they’re older, you might be willing to let them bike or walk to school. The first day isn’t the time to decide how they’ll get there. Decide now and make sure they know the rules - seatbelts, following traffic laws, being on time, etc.
There’s nothing more frustrating than knowing your child didn’t eat. As parents, we know they need to nutritious meals to stay alert and have energy, but we’re not there to make them eat. Most of the time it’s because they didn’t like their options or they weren’t prepared. Before school starts, decide whether they’ll brown bag their lunch or buy from the cafeteria. Figure out if there’s time to eat breakfast at home or if they need to eat at school. Come up with a plan and help them stick to it so they don’t go hungry during the day.
First Day Jitters
Even your most outgoing student will sometimes get a case of nerves before the first day of school. It’s even harder on them when you’re new in town or they’re moving up to a new school like middle or high school. Help your child by reminding them that others are nervous too, but that there are also plenty of positives to look forward to - new friends, old friends, and new classes they may enjoy. If possible, give them the opportunity to tour their new school before the first day so that they have a better sense of where they’re going and what to expect.
Have Backpack, Will Travel
Depending on how old your child is, they’re either excited to get a new backpack or they’re dreading it. Most kids really need one, though. They have so many books, folders, and papers to keep up with that it’s the easiest way to get everything home in one piece. Make sure you help them choose a backpack that’s comfortable to carry and help them pack lightly and keep it organized. For students with a lot of books or gear for school, consider a rolling backpack if the school allows them. If you go this route, make sure it’s light enough for your child to pick up to go up any steps at school.
It’s hard to believe that another summer has come and gone. The start of the school year is a big deal for kids and parents alike. The more you can do to prepare them ahead of time, the easier the transition will be for everyone.