School is back in session! Here are a few tips to help with the change.
No matter how old your children are, getting back into the swing of the school schedule can be a challenge. Consider these tips for making the transition back to school a smooth one.
Establish a transportation routine
The right transportation routine for your family will depend on your distance from school, the age of your children, and other elements like bus systems or friends in the neighborhood. Whether you establish a system for getting your kiddos to the bus, set up a neighborhood carpool, or agree on a “leave by” time for driving teenagers to rely on, planning these details ahead can alleviate later stress and help prevent students from arriving late to school. Leverage your resources and work to hand responsibility over to your children depending on their age.
Especially as they set out to tackle the unknowns of a new school year, it’s important for children to have some predictability in their everyday routine. Setting up a meal plan system can go a long way in giving kids a sense of control and security, and can take the guesswork out of your daily routine.
Whether you’ll be preparing lunches alone, helping your kids do so themselves, or providing lunch money for the day, make a plan at the start of the week so that you can tackle all ingredients in one grocery trip. Meal planning may work just for lunches, or you might find it helpful to plan out dinners as well! Especially for busy families, making a couple of large meals at the start of the week and doling out leftovers in lunches can work wonders for alleviating stress down the line.
Start bedtimes and wake-up times in advance
Sleep is essential for children of all ages — and for parents! Summer break can skew sleep schedules and make it difficult to adapt to school start times again. If possible, start encouraging earlier bedtimes and wake up times before the school year begins. If your school year is already underway, it can help to keep consistency through the weekends. The more stable you can make everyone’s sleep schedules, the healthier and happier your family will be!
Talk about homework
No matter the age of your children, establishing open communication about their homework early on in the school year can be crucial for creating routines for success. Whether your child’s school enforces a planner system or whether you create your own system for keeping track, teaming up with your child to ensure homework is completed on time from the beginning of the school year can prevent an ugly “missing assignments” list from tanking their grades later on. It’s much easier to stay on top of assignments as they are due than it is to wade through make-up work at the close of the quarter! The sooner you ask about homework and help set aside time for it to get done, the easier it will be to continue a routine of success all year long.
Help with organization
When it comes to staying on top of assignments, sporting events, test dates, and other commitments, organization is key. It’s also a skill that takes practice, and one that many children require help with! Whether you have kids in elementary school or high school, helping them establish an organization system early in the year and checking in on how it’s working regularly can make all the difference in their success.
Set aside 30 minutes in the first few weeks of school to set up a system with your child, and keep in mind that what works for them may not be your go-to organization method. They may need color-coded folders for each class, or they may want to organize assignments by their due date. No matter the system, sticking to it and revisiting often is key.
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