Back to School
Have you ever noticed that once the 4th of July passes the days get shorter, vacations wind down and every store you walk into is packed with school supplies and that back-to-school time is right around the corner? Before you know it, Thanksgiving is here, and you are pulling out Christmas decorations! As you begin to prepare to transition into a new school year, we wanted to give you several ideas we ourselves have learned as parents on how to make it as smooth as possible.
1. Re-establish Routines
How great is it to sleep in? To let your kids have a laid-back schedule, late bed times and getting to eat whenever they want? No packing of lunches (and all the Mommas said Amen!) We have learned (the hard way) that the transition back to a more rigid, early bedtime and early to rise schedule can be stressful, well more like downright painful. Slowly pushing back bedtime to what it will be, establishing a morning routine and providing a nutritious breakfast can help ease your littles back into the “real world.”
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2. Make a family calendar
While I don’t like to admit it, it took me years to really understand just how important a calendar is. One of the best tips I have ever been given as a mom is to sit down on Sundays with your partner and go over the upcoming week. Amazon has many large calendars you can order and put up in places where everyone can see them to keep everyone on track. Color-coding your calendar can ensure it is easy to read to help make sure nothing falls through the cracks.
3. Get check-ups out of the way
Whether it pertains to physical or emotional well being make sure your child starts off the school year in good health! Scheduling your medical and dental check ups before the first day of school allows you to send them off knowing they are taken care of. By doing this early you can also avoid the hassle of pulling children out of school for routine appointments. For older children, be aware that most school sports teams require a physical before participation. Check with your school to see if you need to obtain any specific forms that are required!
4. Get a Filing System
Paperwork. Emails. Paperwork. Emails. Am I right?! SO many emails and SO much paperwork. Review and organize all the materials your school sends out regarding schedules, classrooms, supply lists, health and emergency forms, extracurricular activity sign-ups, and important dates. By creating a filing system early on you will be able to differentiate between the forms that are due immediately and need to be kept, it also will give you a leg up throughout the school year to help you stay organized!
5. Reconnect with classmates
For some students, the social aspect of school can breed anxiety. Finding ways to help your child see friendly faces before the first day of school can make all the difference. Friendships can drift over the summer, by setting up playdates with classmates in the weeks leading up to school your child will go into school more confident and you will also have the opportunity to reconnect with other parents.
6. Set up a homework station
Homework. So much homework. Finding ways to encourage your child can make it a little easier for everyone in the family. Setting up a specific “work area” that your child enjoys is a small way to do that. While older children can have more options on where they like to work and in what area of the house, younger children seem to be more encouraged in a family gathering room like the living room or kitchen. Comfy chairs, good lighting and an organized space will help clear their minds to stay focused. Keep in mind that each child is different. Knowing how your child works is key. Finding the right time to finish homework is also important and small observations into the ways your own child works can make all the difference on how smooth your afternoons go.
7. Meet the Teacher
Make it a priority. Most schools (if not all) have a back to school, meet the teacher. GO. It allows the child to see the class and meet his/her teacher before the first day of school that will eliminate many of those first day butterflies.
As you finish out the summer months, we hope you find joy in the small things, take a minute to soak it all in, take a nap if you can, watch the sunset, breathe, and enjoy your kids a little bit longer. Because truth is, next summer they will be that much bigger and that much older. I heard a long time ago to “be where your feet are in that moment.” Try it.
School will be here soon enough….
-Your AWay Home Loans Team