Back to School
As summer ends and a new school year approaches, it is important that parents make positive changes within the family routine to ensure that their children start school on a positive note. Here are some simple skills that may help:
Set a new routine before the school year starts – Summer is a time for relaxation that can involve vacations, staying up late and long gaps for unstructured time for children. Parents and children need time to transition from their summer routine to their school routine. Parents school start incorporating parts of their school routine at least two to three weeks before the first day of school. An example of this is moving bedtime up from 10pm to 8:30pm.
Be Prepared – Parents should make sure their children have all back to school necessities. This can include: basic school supplies (paper, pencils, and folders), school uniforms, backpacks, and electronics (calculators, computers). Parents can get a supply list from their children’s school to help with this process.
Participate in back to school activities – Most schools have back to school events, such as, back to school fairs and meet the teacher night. These events allow parents and their children to gather important information like, classroom assignments, schedules, and the school calendar. Parents and their children have the opportunity to meet school staff, and to receive information on how to access resources and services offered at the school. These back to school events can also provide comfort to parents and children as they explore their new learning environment.
Set goals for the upcoming year – It is important for parents to encourage their children to set goals for the upcoming school year. Goals can include: better grades, joining a team or club, or making more friends. Parents can assist their children in making a vision board with encouraging pictures and inspirational quotes to keep them focused and motivated to achieve their goals.
Make good physical and mental health a priority – Going back to school can make life very busy and overwhelming for parents and children. It is important to make healthy eating and regular physical exercise a part of the family routine. Parents should minimize their children access to sugary snacks and encourage physical activity often. Parents should also talk to their children each day and provide support for signs of stress and depression. Parents can look to a physician and/or mental health therapist for support.