When it comes to back-to-school prep, we typically think about how to get the little ones ready. But, how about the older kids? Whether it’s fourth grade, seventh grade or high school, making sure older kids and teens are physically and emotionally prepared to go back to school is an important part of setting them up for a successful year! And even if they are older, having mom and dad take an active role and set guidelines can really help set things off on the right foot! Here are a few simple ways to start the process, now! Today, we shared a few tips for prepping little ones for back to school on NBC Connecticut’s daily lifestyle show, CT Live! You can see the clip, here!
Sign them up for activities and events they’re interested in and will be excited about! This way, even if they aren’t looking forward to going back to school, they will have something else to be excited about. If you need some help finding the best activities for your child this school year, check the 2019-2010 Stamford Moms Back to School Activities Guide for lots of options!
Allow your older child or teen to lead the way with back-to-school shopping so they pick out a backpack, lunchbox, pens, notebooks, etc. that they love! One great way to do this is to put money on a Visa or other gift card. This way, they have a budget that they need to stay within to get what they need and want. It will help them feel like they are deciding what they’re getting, while also setting limits.
Get their homework area ready at your house. Whether it’s a desk in their room or the kitchen table, having a designated area where school work gets done after school every day will help children and teens stay focused and organized. Make sure the area is loaded with pens, paper, a calendar, calculator and anything else they may need to complete their assignments.
Get them back on their sleep schedule. Just like younger children, older children and teens tend to stay up later in the summer. Get them back into the habit of going to bed at “school time” and waking up early rather than sleeping in. This way, they are feeling back on schedule on the first day of school and the early bedtime/waketime aren’t a shock to their systems. Help them out by setting a time to turn off phones, iPads, TV, etc. Replace the time typically spent on electronics in the evening by having your child pick out a book they’d like to read for fun!
Talk to your kids about going back to school. Make sure they understand what the morning and afternoon routines will look like, what you expect of them and how to balance after school activities and sports with school work. If they’re nervous about anything, talk about it! Share your own back-to-school experience, especially any times you remember feeling anxious. Head to The Local Moms Network for a great article from contributor and family therapist, Caitlynn Dunn to help!
Keep yourself organized by filling out all necessary paperwork and making sure you know who it needs to go to, prior to the first day of school. This will keep everyone from panicking at the last minute!
Make sure your child has completed summer reading and any assignments associated. This will help them start the year off on a great foot and again, will help avoid last minute panic!
Taking the time to get prepared now will help everyone start the year on a good note!