Friday, August 24, 2012

Getting ready for back to school

When I was a kid, back to school time was actually pretty exciting and, for most kids this is true. Its exciting because we get to go shopping for new clothes and new school supplies, we get to meet our new teachers and classmates and meet up with old friends. But this can also be a time of stress and anxiety, not only for kids, but for their parent's as well.

Here are some tips for making a smooth transition from summer to school for you and your kids.

  1. Begin having your kids go to bed at their 'school-time' bed time and have them begin to get up at the time they would need to in order to get ready for school. This teaches your kid to prepare, ahead of time, for expected changes in life. Don't let your kids stay up late right up to the day before they start school. This will set them up for getting to school late and lead them to believe waiting till the last minute to do things is OK. 
  2. Create an area of the home where your kids will do their homework and agree on a time of day that they will need to do their homework once school starts. Don't leave it up to your kids to get their homework done. Create an office for them so they can feel important. Finding them a place of their own to do their homework will give them a sense of pride and will make doing their homework more enjoyable.
  3. Discuss what they can expect from this year's school and take them there. Entering a new grade and especially entering a new school can be a major sense of anxiety for your kids. How many nightmares did you have (or still do have) about not being able to find your classes or remember your locker combination? Take your kid to the school and walk them through it. Show them their classroom, locker and even meet the teacher if possible. This will ease their anxiety for that first day. 
  4. Discuss what your kids can expect on how they will be getting to and from school. Perhaps this will be the first year that they will be riding the bus or walking themselves to school. Practice where they will meet the bus or the route they are to take to school. Also make sure they have your address and phone number memorized and know the rules on talking to strangers.
Make this school year easier for you and your kids by planning ahead. 

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