Get Your Kids Back Into a School Year Routine
Buying clothing and supplies is the easiest of all the tasks you must accomplish before your kids go back to school. Harder is developing the patience you’ll need to get them reestablished in a back-to-school routine. You can overcome any resistance, and make your life easier, with the following tips:
Back-to-school tips for parents
Have a strategy in place and begin to implement it up to a week before school begins.
Bedtime. Help your kids reset their body clocks again to school time by sending them to bed 15 minutes earlier each night. The same applies to waking up.
Homework. Don’t wait until school begins to decide where and when your kids will do their homework. Depending upon the child’s personality and your family’s schedule, some kids like to come home and get it done right away while others need a little down time before turning on their brain again.
Routine. Implement an organized morning routine for both you and your kids and try to stick to it. Post it in the kitchen and discuss it the day before school begins. Use pictograms for younger kids of clothing (get dressed), a bed (make your bed), food (eat breakfast) and teeth (brush your teeth). Older kids can be given additional responsibilities such as helping younger siblings or making their own breakfast. Encourage your kids to get in the habit of picking out their school clothing the night before.
Organization. Keep extra school supplies in an organized location where all your kids can reach them. Hang a large family calendar in the kitchen with notations for every member of exactly where they have to be on any given day. On a separate calendar, include any long-term projects and each child’s status for completing the task to help them reach their goal.
Back-to-school tips for kids
Give your kids age-appropriate choices and responsibilities to help them get back into a school routine.
Let them choose. Whether it be the clothing they wear or what they’re going to eat for lunch, kids are more cooperative when they’re given a few choices. Older children can actually plan and pack their own healthy lunch and decide what to put into their backpacks for the day.
Learn to schedule. Older kids should plan their own schedules. You shouldn’t have to nag them to do their homework because the task will be on their schedule. Kids who learn how to manage their time early in life are often more successful in school and develop good life habits.
Limit activities. Ask your kids to choose no more than two after-school activities each. This prevents overbooking themselves (and you), especially if transportation is involved. Perhaps the most important back-to-school routine kids can learn is how to balance their priorities through the choices they make.