For most families, school starts within the next two weeks. Summer is drawing to a close, and with that change comes a new schedule for parents and kids alike. This switch can be difficult, especially for kids who are reluctant to head back to the classroom.
To make this period of transition as easy as possible, here are a few tricks that will help your kids adjust to their school schedule and prepare for their upcoming classes.
Move Towards Their School-Year Bedtime
Summer nights mean staying up late to watch movies and hang with friends, but during the school year, that's not going to fly. Doctors say that elementary and middle schoolers should be getting 9 to 11 hours of sleep each night, and teenagers should be getting a minimum of eight hours. Start slowly working towards this bedtime over the next week. One technique is to move their bedtime back by fifteen minutes each night until they're going to bed at the appropriate time.
Start Cutting Down on the TV Time and Video Gaming
Your child might have had free reign when it comes to their summertime activities, but with school on the horizon, they're going to need to start thinking about prioritizing their free time. Talk to them about how much gaming and vegging on the couch is appropriate during the school year, then start working towards a healthy amount of relaxation. After all, they won't be able to play Fortnight for four hours a day once they have homework and extracurriculars to juggle.
Engage the Kids in Back-to-School Shopping
As easy as it is for you to pick up their folders and pencil bags on your own at Walmart, incorporating your kid's opinions into the shopping process is a great way to get them pumped for school. Let them select their own backpack, some new clothes, and classroom accessories so that they're active in the preparation process before school begins.
Schedule Doctor's Appointments Before Class Starts
If possible, now is the best time to have your children's eyes checked and make sure they're up-to-date on all of their shots. Taking them out of class to attend a doctor's appointment is a hassle and can throw off their routine, so use these last free days of summer to get medical tasks taken care of.
Organize Playdates With Their Classmates
Whether your kid will be in class with their best friends or a bunch of classmates they don't know, it's a good idea to get them reacquainted with their school companions. Encourage them to spend time with kids their age so that they know who they can rely on when the first day of school rolls around. Not only will this facilitate healthy relationships at school, but it may also ease feelings of anxiety about returning to a social setting every day.
Get Everyone Excited
Positivity is contagious. If your kid has expressed doubts, worries, or dread about returning to school, do your best to focus on the best parts of the academic year. Remind them about their favorite friends and the holidays that are coming up over the next few months. Let your enthusiasm be visible so that they can share it with you.
Take Another Look at Those Summer Assignments
Are you sure your third-grader understood the summer reading assignment? Are there any deadlines that will sneak up right at the beginning of school and leave your kid feeling unprepared? Make sure that everything is completed well before the first day of school so that your child can focus predominantly on adjusting to their new environment instead of worrying about their summer tasks.
How do you start transitioning your family into the school year? Leave other suggestions for local parents in the comments below.