Back-To-School Time


Help make going back a breeze

childrenBy Kathryn M. Miller ~ As summer vacations wind down and back-to-school time approaches, there are a number of ways to help children get back into the swing of things and ready for a successful school year.

  • Re-establish or create new routines – Before school starts is the perfect time to re-establish and create new routines. Make sure children start going to bed earlier and waking up earlier, so he or she is ready for the first day.
  • Get organized – Gather school supplies and go over their reading list to help them feel organized and prepared.
  • Start new traditions – Prior to the first day of school, plan something special for children – whether it’s going out for a celebratory meal, leaving an encouraging note in his backpack or buying a small gift to commemorate the first day.
  • Eat a healthier diet – By removing sugary foods and incorporating healthier foods into the diet, parents may be able to reduce a child’s stress levels. Consider fruit, veggies and dip, nuts, cheese, yogurt or a glass of milk as snacks. Check the school cafeteria menu for the month and plan on packing lunch on the days when the main course is less than appealing.
  • Meet the teacher – Attending back-to-school night gives children the opportunity to meet their teachers and classmates and see their new classroom.
  •  Beat first day jitters – Remind children that there are probably a lot of students who are uneasy about the first day of school. Point out the positive aspects of starting school –she’ll see old friends and meet new ones – and refresh her positive memories about previous years.
  • Sign up for extracurriculars – After-school programs, such as Girls on the Run (www.girlsontherun.org), a local non-profit dedicated to building confidence through running, can jump-start a positive attitude about school by promoting confidence and optimism.
  • Stay mentally and physically fit – Exercise is a good way to de-stress. Exercising may reduce anxiety levels, which can also help children fall asleep more easily.
  • Promote learning at home – An environment that is conducive to doing homework is important. Children need a consistent work space that is quiet, without distractions and promotes study. Checklists, timers and parental supervision can help overcome homework problems, and free online resources such as Khan Academy (www.khanacademy.org) can assist students and parents alike.

Classes begin on August 10 in both the Paradise Valley Unified (http://pvschools.net) and Scottsdale Unified School District (https://concrete.susd.org). |CST

 

Sources: American Academy of Pediatrics; Girls on the Run; PvSchools

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