11 back to school tips to kick-start the new school year

back to school

back to school

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.

  1. 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.


  1. 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!


  1. 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.


  1. 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.


  1. 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.


  1. 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.


  1. 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.


  1. 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.


  1. 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.


  1. 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.


  1. 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!




Welcoming 2019!



Happy New Year! So, how are those resolutions going? Are they still intact? It is estimated that 72% of New Years Resolutions are health-related.

Keeping on track with your health resolutions begins with you. Developing good health habits means you are more likely to enjoy a longer, healthier, happier life. The more they become a habit the more successfully you will maintain these new lifestyle choices.

Getting recommended health checks means you can work with your healthcare team and make success even more likely. It will improve your chances of preventing health problems throughout your life and ensure your resolve stays strong.

A health check is an examination of your current state of health. It can be likened to a service for the body in the same way we service our cars! You take your car to be checked regularly so you should do so with your body too!

The aim of a health check is to help find, prevent or reduce the effect of potential medical situations. It is always better to avoid illness or disease than to treat it.

Having a regular doctor or practice has several advantages. It will help you to build a relationship with your Doctor. This, in turn, means you are more likely to feel comfortable to talk more openly and honestly. Your doctor will get to know you better and understand your health needs and concerns. Having a regular doctor or practice also means that your medical history stays in one place and is more likely to be kept up to date.

What can a health check involve?

A health check generally involves:

  • Updating your medical history
  • Examining any your health issues or potential problems
  • Performing tests if required
  • A follow up of any problems that are found
  • Advice and information on how to improve your health.

There are different health checks that are recommended at different stages in your life.

Health checks for preconception & pregnancy

Pregnancy is a huge event and can be very demanding on a woman’s body. The preconception period is usually considered to be the three months prior to pregnancy and is vital to ensure the health of your baby.

This is the perfect time to undergo some health checks. Making life changes at this time can help reduce problems during pregnancy and ensure a swift and timely recovery from the delivery.

Some health checks that you might want to consider before pregnancy include:

Pap test

This test can detect changes to cells in the cervix before they develop into cervical cancer. The cervical cancer vaccine is part of the National Immunisation Program (NIP) since 2007 for high school-aged girls. This does not replace the need for Pap tests. The vaccine does not protect against all cancer-causing types of HPV. Because of the nature of the Pap test, you may prefer to have this done before you are pregnant, or you may be offered a test in early pregnancy.

Dental check

Regular dental check-ups are important. Poor dental health can affect not only our teeth and gums but also lead to problems like malnutrition and infections. X-rays are not recommended during pregnancy. You may need an X-ray during an oral exam so having a dental check to make sure you catch and fix any problems before you are pregnant is a good idea.

Immunisation status check

Knowing your vaccination status and immunity for common infections when planning a pregnancy is vital. If you don’t have a record of when you last had the necessary immunisations don’t worry. A blood test can show if you are immune to infections that may be harmful to a pregnancy such as rubella, varicella (chickenpox) and influenza.

General health and blood tests

Assessing your overall health before you plan to conceive is important. It can uncover problems you need to resolve before becoming pregnant. You may need blood tests to check for thyroid function, blood glucose levels or for sexually transmitted infections (STIs). You may also need a full blood count to check your iron and folate levels. Your doctor can help you determine what checks are suitable for you.

During pregnancy

Several different health checks may be available to you during pregnancy. These include tests for abdominal palpitations and ultrasounds. Maternal serum screening test (MSS) and amniocentesis are others. Check with your doctor or gynaecologist on which tests you might need.

We wish you a happy and healthy pregnancy!