Prepare for the new school year with our back-to-school tips. From establishing sleeping patterns to practising brain exercises, there are plenty of strategies you can use to ensure that your children are ready for the new school year. With proper preparation, you can decrease the stress that’s associated with this busy period. Find bags, Tupperware, toys, books, and more on Junk Mail.
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Get all the school supplies ready
From stationery to books, bags, and lunch boxes, you need to make sure that you check everything off the school supplies list before your children go back to school, preferably as soon as possible.
Make sure you know the rules about book covering before you buy covers/paper. Schools usually give out papers to stick onto their books to ensure everyone’s books look the same. Getting this sorted will relieve stress and get your kids excited about the new school year.
- Before you buy stuff you don’t actually need, do proper “stocktake” of the school supplies you have left from last year.
- Don’t send your kids to school with their newest and best supplies during the first week.
- You can cut erasers in half or in 3 pieces, so if your child loses it, it’s not a train smash.
- Mark absolutely everything. You can engrave (if possible) or use a permanent marker. Just make sure the markings are legible and unique to your child.
Buying school clothes
When buying school uniforms, make sure to take your children with you and let them fit everything before you buy it. It’s also advisable to buy clothes a tiny bit bigger to ensure they don’t grow out of their uniforms too quickly. You want to get the most value for money.
Should your children’s school uniforms no longer fit, you can either donate them to the school, resell them to other parents you know or even sell them on Junk Mail.
Set up a dedicated 'homework station'
Create a space with your child where they can do their homework or school projects. This space needs to be big enough, away from distractions, and comfortable for your children.
Establish sleep patterns
The holidays are likely to disrupt your family’s usual routine, including the kids’ sleeping patterns. Prepare for the new school year by re-establishing their regular bedtime routine at least a week before the holidays end. While your children may protest at first, be consistent in getting them back into a routine. A good night’s sleep plays a vital role in your children’s emotional wellbeing as well as their academic performance.
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Introduce healthy eating
Disruptions to your schedule during the holidays mean you’re unlikely to maintain regular mealtimes. The abundance of sweets and chocolates that are part of the festive season celebrations also disrupt healthy eating patterns. Start with a nutritious eating plan and regular mealtimes as soon as you can. Proper nutrition helps your children have enough energy to get through the school day. It also helps your children focus in the classroom while promoting their physical and emotional wellbeing.
Re-establish rules about screen time
Although screen time can be fun and educational for your kids, too much of it during the week might affect their routines negatively and take away from much-needed family time. Rules about screen time will also help when your kids have to do homework or study for a test. Make sure you explain the rules about screen time and try to re-enforce those rules a week before your kids go back to school.
Practice effective communication
Make sure that you keep the communication lines open between you and your children so that they know that they can approach you with any of their fears or concerns. Have a family meeting before the new school year starts so that your children have an opportunity to express how they’re feeling. You can also use this time to provide them with information about any changes that are taking place and to answer their questions. This is particularly important if your child is starting at a new school.
The back-to-school period can invoke anxiety in parents and children alike. However, with proper preparation, you can ease into the new school year with minimal stress. Returning to school requires some adjustments so you can expect to face a few challenges during the first few weeks of term. Use your support system and take care of yourself so that you can remain calm during this hectic period. When you’re relaxed and supportive, your children are more likely to be calm too.
Start with brain exercises
After a long holiday, your children’s concentration levels will have decreased. Gently prepare them for the new school year by practising a few brain exercises in the week before the term starts. You can ask your children to read to you each day as well as doing a few fun math exercises together. Reading your children a bedtime story is a great opportunity to spend quality time with them. Ask them a few questions about the story as you go along to improve their comprehension capabilities. You can also take your children on fun, but educational outings, such as visiting museums, the zoo, animal rescue centres or even taking them to pottery and cooking classes.
Goals are an excellent way to stay motivated as the year progresses but it’s important to avoid putting to pressure on your children. Excessive pressure can damage your children’s self-esteem and it can also be detrimental to their academic achievements. Allow your children to set their own goals and help them to create steps on how they will reach their goals. Remind them that their academic achievement is not a reflection of their self-worth and that there are many other qualities that are also important, such as kindness, courage, and empathy.