How to Easily Get Your Kids Ready for School
As a parent and an educator I know how difficult the first week of school can be for both children and adults. There are only a few short weeks of summer left before the back to school craziness begins. Over the years I have discovered a few tricks to making going back more of a success and less of a mess.
1. Start Setting the Schedule
Getting back in the habit of going to bed before the sun does, and waking up before the sun does can be difficult. To make the transition back to following your children’s school schedule, start making bed time a little earlier each night or every other night until your children are sleeping soundly at a sensible time.
Develop and implement a morning routine that works for your family to avoid rushing around the first week of school. Giving kids age appropriate tasks to do, not only makes your job easier, but helps them rise and shine while getting mentally ready for the academic tasks they will have to do when class starts.
Try getting to school a little early if possible, so that your kids can socialize, become more alert and get out any excess energy before class starts.
2. Stock Up
Start shopping for school supplies now instead of waiting for the list of necessary materials that the teacher sends home. By the time school starts, the stores are picked clean of many items including paper and folders. I’ve experienced the mad rush of shoppers the week before school starts as well. The best time to buy school supplies is now!
Oh, and when you see someone loading every last box of crayons on sale and available into their overflowing cart, smile because they are probably a teacher. 😉
3. Homework Over the Summer?
You do not need to make your home into an educational boot camp in order to give your progenies an educational boost before school starts. Set aside a little time each day to go over grade appropriate materials with your kids. Playing games is an easy way to sneak some review work in, while having fun. You can play a game that has money in it such a monopoly to review how to make change and subtract large numbers. They also get the benefit of being able to add the numbers on the dice. Play word games like boggle and scrabble to reinforce spelling and build vocabulary.
You can explore science by keeping track of electricity usage for a week or starting a garden and keeping a record of garden activity. Visiting the San Pedro Science Center or The Cabrillo Marine Aquarium can be educational and enjoyable for the entire family. Try to make learning fun by adapting activities to fit the interest of your children.
4. Read, Read, Read
Reading with your youngster is a key to developing literacy skills. Studies have shown correlations between the time students spend reading and academic success. Reading promotes logical thinking skills, abilities to communicate more effectively and helps them build their vocabulary. Try to find a balance between reading to you kids, and having them read to you. Spending this time together will have the added bonus of giving you quality snuggle time together.
5. Spend Some Extra Special Time Together
Either you will build fond memories so that your child lovingly remembers “that time last summer when…” or they will get so sick of you they will be itching to go back to school. If you are unsure what to do with the little balls of energy you can read some suggestions in the article: 6 Ways to Keep Kids Busy During Summer.
6. Tell Them to Clean Their Room
Tell a child to clean their room can fix almost any problem. After mentioning this chore, they will appreciatively mumble under their breath, “I can’t wait for school to start.”
Do you have any other tips for our readers? How do you get your kids ready for school after a long summer?