11 Ways to Get Ready for Back to School
Why is it that as soon as August begins, we start dreading back to school time? It doesn’t matter if you are the parent or the kid, adjusting back to the hecticness of getting everyone out the door on time every morning and juggling homework and after school activities can be a real chore.
Save yourself some of the headaches that come with back to school routines, by trying these 11 ways to get ready for back to school:
Slowly Get Them Back into Learning
Hopefully your kids have been reading all summer and doing education activities, but don’t worry if they have mostly been enjoying time in the sun. You can still help them get back into learning mode by having them spend a allotted time each day reading and working on any summer homework they might have. This way they are gradually getting back into the school mindset and it won’t be such a jolt to their systems.
Make School Shopping Fun
As a parent, school shopping can get expensive, and for kids it’s a not so subtle reminder that their days of freedom are numbered so arguably no one really enjoys school shopping. It can be an easier pill to swallow, however, if you give your kids choices so they can be excited about some aspect of back to school whether it is a new outfit or a cool new backpack.
Adjust Their Sleep Schedule Gradually
If your kids have been staying up late and sleeping in most of the summer than that first early alarm on the first day back to school will definitely be, well, a little alarming. To make it less traumatic, use the two weeks leading up to the first day of school to have them go to bed and wake up a little earlier each day. A good night’s sleep is very important for your child’s learning and for their health so make sure they keep to a regularly scheduled bedtime as much as possible.
Schedule in Some Fun Family Time Now
If everyone has been so busy do their own thing this summer that there has been little time for family bonding, then make it a priority now in these last few weeks. As preparations for school pick up so does the stress. Family togetherness is what you need now before everyone’s dance card gets filled. Even if it is just dinner and board games on a Saturday or Sunday night.
Stay Ahead of First-time Anxieties
For any of your kids who are starting school for the first time or who are transitioning to a new school, there are certain things you can do to soothe away any anxieties. Make sure your child is familiar with the school and the teachers by going on a tour and attending any school orientations. Practice the bus route and pick up and drop offs before the first day.
Carve Out a Special Homework Space
While you might not have a lot of extra space to carve out a separate workspace for each kid, it is a good idea to plan ahead where you want your kids to work on their studies. Think about each kid’s individual needs. Older kids will more likely require more privacy, and if you have three or more kids trying to set them all up at the dining room table might spell disaster.
Get Your Little Ones into School Mode
Imitation is the greatest form of flattery. Your littlest peanuts watch their older siblings with an eagle eye and want to be just like them which includes doing homework and having their own school supplies. As you are gathering school supplies for your school aged children get extra stuff for the younger kids too and let them sit down with “homework” when the older kids do. Consider it good practice for when they really have to go to school. It will probably the only time they do not complain about having to do homework.
Organize space for school bags and supplies
Keep the morning routine hassle free by setting up a designated cubby with hooks and shelving for shoes so you know where everything is in the morning. Also create a command station for all important kid-related paperwork so you never forget to hand-in that permission slip or pay that sport fee. If you have more than one child, create a folder for each child so you can better keep track of everything.
Plan meals ahead of time
Not every kid is satisfied with a simple peanut butter and jelly sandwich in a paper bag so if you know your kids are going to have specific needs for their lunches, shop around for the tools and containers that make it easier to give each child the lunch they prefer.
For breakfast also try to cook and freeze ahead of time fresh pancakes and other more fulfilling meals that will give your kids a good start to the day. Some protein and fresh fruit is always a good way to start the day. If your kids prefer something like eggs or an omelet in the morning just make sure you get up early enough to doing the cooking without getting stressed.
Also, don’t underestimate the importance of an afternoon snack. Save time by cutting up fruits and vegetables on the weekend and use them as quick snacks during the week.
Simplify your kids’ wardrobe
Unless your child has a uniform that he or she has to wear every day, picking out what to wear every day can be challenging. Unless you can afford to buy them a new outfit for each day, there will always be concerns over wearing the same clothes over and over. Prevent meltdowns in the morning by helping your child plan out their clothes each week.
Sometimes trying to prepare too much can also cause stress so make sure you don’t overwhelm yourself by doing too much. Take time to just breathe and enjoy the remaining nights of summer. Time is always flowing forward so don’t forget to take time for you.
Try these 11 ways to get ready for back to school and then you can take a deep breath and then start planning for Halloween. For more information about the importance of sleep, check out Harleysville Mattress’ sleep center.