The festive season is over and a brand new school year is quickly approaching. Instead of jumping back into the school routine all at once on the first day of their return, it’s better to ease kids into the transition. Here are three simple steps to help prepare them for the adjustment and gear up for a great school year.
Vacations often see our little ones staying up and sleeping in later than normal. Start gradually re-introducing their old, familiar pre-holiday sleep patterns a week or two before school starts to give their body clocks time to get back in sync. Do this by moving their turn in and wake up times fifteen minutes earlier each day, until you are back on the ideal schedule. Also re-inforce their usual term-time nightly rituals such as getting their clothes ready for the next day, or eliminating screen time at least an hour before bed.
Talking about school will stimulate your child to begin focusing their mental energies on the new school year and help get them excited about it. Explain as much as you can about what the new school-year holds and ask positive open-ended questions such as what they are most looking forward to, or which teachers they hope to have. Reassure them that any back-to-school jitters are completely normal and will soon pass. It can also be helpful to create a countdown calendar that your child has control over, and driving them past their school a few days before they return.
There are dozens of things to organise before the first day of school – encourage your child to participate in this process so they feel empowered and start to look forward to heading back. Allow them to assist with labelling of belongings, draw up their own class timetables or colour-code their exercise books and folders. Make school-supply shopping an event, and let your child pick out items in his favorite color or style whenever possible.