Back to school time is always a bit scary and can be a huge thing for some kids. It is a big transition, not only for children but for parents too.
Your child may be filled with excitement and notions on what it is going to be like. They may experience first-day jitters and some nervousness. Meanwhile, parents are filled with thoughts of “Am I ready? Do I have everything I need?”
To help reduce those thoughts and help you and your child prepare for the new school year we have come up with some tips. All you really need is a little organisation and planning.
Here are 11 back to school tips to kick-start the new school year and get you prepared for a fresh start.
- Get back into your sleep routine. To help lessen those stressful school mornings, set up a regular bedtime and morning time routine. This will help your child prepare for school. Begin your usual school sleep routine about a week or so before school starts, so round about now.
- Shop for school supplies together. Kids are more likely to embrace the start of the new school year if they are involved. To get your child excited about starting a new grade, shop for school stuff together. Let them pick out their own backpack, lunchbox, etc. This is a great way to give them a little bit of responsibility too!
- Re-establish school routines. Have your child practice getting back into the rhythm of their daily school routine. Get them to wake and get up at the same time every day. Encourage them to eat at a similar time that they would be doing so at school. Another great idea is to plan a few outside activities. Do this so your child will have to leave and come home around the same time they would if they were at school. This will help them be more physically prepared and mentally ready for the big day.
- Set up a homework station. Sit down with your child and together choose a time and place where they will be expected to do their homework every day. This can be somewhere quiet, like in the study, or even in the kitchen while you are preparing dinner. Be sure to choose a time where you are around so that if your child needs your help you are there.
- Children get ill – be prepared. It can be difficult to find a sitter when your child is sick and this is possibly the biggest challenge that working parents face. Before the new term even begins, it’s a good idea to have a sitter already lined up in case you get that phone call home from the nurse saying your child is ill.
- Make an after-school game plan. Make a plan for where your child will go after school lets out for the day. Depending upon the age of your child, make a plan as to whether they will go to a neighbour’s house. You may choose an after-school program or allow them to stay home by themselves. This will help reduce any confusion and misunderstandings during the first few weeks.
- Turn off the TV and video games. For a lot of children summertime is filled with endless video games and TV programs. Children are usually in shock when they begin school. They suddenly realise that six hours of their day is going to spent learning and not playing games and watching TV. Ease your child into the learning process by turning off the electrics intermittently. Instead encourage them to read or play quietly.
- Review school material and information. For most parents, schools send home information in a pack. This usually includes information regarding their child’s new teacher and important dates to remember. It will probably also include emergency forms, and transportation routines. Make sure that you read through this information carefully, and mark down all important dates on your calendar.
- Get organised. The best way to prepare for back to school time is to be as organised as you can be. With school comes a massive amount of paperwork which can and often does overwhelm a household. Designate a spot in your house for homework, permission slips, and any other school-related papers. This can help cutdown on the paper clutter and make your life less stressful.
- Get your child’s yearly check-up provided here at HLGP. School and germs go hand in hand, so it’s best to get your child’s yearly check-up before school even starts. Get any required vaccinations and ask your doctor the best ways your child can stay healthy throughout the school year. They will have some really valuable tips on this.
- Plan. If your child has Asthma or Allergy / Anaphylaxis then the school will require the completion of the appropriate management plan. Make an appointment with your GP to have this done.
Through preparation and organisation, you can make sure that your child will have a smooth transition to the start of the new school year. By doing so, life is less stressful for you and your child!