Back to School Is Almost Here

It’s hard to believe it’s late August and the end of summer is quickly approaching.  By now you have most likely unpacked your camper’s bags (done endless amounts of laundry) and have everyone settled into life at home and the family routine. But don’t get too relaxed…because the new school year is just around the corner and it’s time to start the transition from summer to fall.  Saying goodbye to summer is never easy, and the last couple of weeks can be chaotic as we try to make sure everyone is ready for the first day of school.  Most of us have spent the last couple of months with less on our plates.  We have had a break from homework assignments, extracurricular activities and the running around that the school year brings.  So how do we help our children (and ourselves) make the transition from summer mode to school mode as easy as possible?
The following tips may help…

1.      Re-establish Bedtime Routines:  If you have been edging toward a later bedtime during the long days of summer, begin to set up a good bedtime routine for the school year.  Sleep is an essential part of school success, so try to get your child’s sleep patterns back to normal the week leading up to school.

2.     Get Back To Breakfast:  A healthy breakfast will give kids the energy they need to learn.  According to many experts, eating a low-fat, low-sugar, high protein breakfast can have a beneficial influence on school performance. 

3.     Designate A Space To Do Homework:  Establish a routine and an area for your student to do their homework.  An older student can choose to do their work at a desk in their room, while younger children may need a spot at the kitchen table so that you can provide guidance when needed.  What matters most is that they have a place they can use regularly to complete their work. 

4.     Stock Up On School Supplies:  Take your school supply list to the local Target (or wherever you shop) and stock up on required supplies so that your child is prepared for the first day of school.  Have your child join you and pick out some things off the list so they get excited about returning to school with their choice of backpack or favorite character on their notebooks.

5.     Read…Read…Read:  Visit your local library and get your kids’ minds active and ready for learning.  Read some books together, it’s an excellent way to spend time together and refresh reading skills. 

6.     Plan Ahead:  Write down important information for your child to help them remember teachers’ names, room numbers, class schedules and bus numbers.  For children entering Kindergarten or moving up to a new school, it will help them feel more at ease if they are familiar with their surroundings.

7.     Mark It Down:  Use a calendar to record when assignments are due, tests are scheduled, and extracurricular practices and rehearsals will be held.  Keep one calendar for all events so you could see if you are getting overbooked. 

8.     Reunite with Friends:  If your child has been away at summer camp, plan a get together with school friends to help get reacquainted with their buddies. 

9.     Anticipate and Address Anxiety:  Going back to school can be stressful for kids of all ages, so head off stress by talking with your children about new experiences.  Be positive and confident in their abilities to take on new challenges. 

1.  Reflect:  Most importantly, reflect on the highlights of the summer and how amazing it was.  Talk about the wonderful times at camp, or on vacation, and how great it’s going to be to get back to it all again in summer 2013.  

 So enjoy the last few weeks of summer and we hope the transition to school life is as smooth as possible.  Have a great school year!!!