Back to School Tips

Back to School Tips For Parents Coming back to school after having the summer off can be a stressful time for students. Sometimes transitioning into a school routine is hard, and other times having a new teacher/classmates is difficult. Getting Back Into a Routine One of the hardest things for children coming back to school after a long summer break is getting back into the school routine. Routine can be hard for children in the middle of the school year, let alone right after having the summer off. During the summer often times bedtime routine and morning routines are thrown right out the window. It's summer! I get it! Children are busy with vacations, play dates, sports, visiting family members, and so much more. If you haven't had a chance to get back into that school routine yet, or are having a hard time making that transition, read further to see if there is anything else you could be trying with your kids. Remember, every family is different and YOU know your child best! Take whatever tips can be helpful and ignore the rest ;) Night Time Routine The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children ages 3-5 years get 10-13 hours of sleep a day, including naps. Children ages 6-12 years should be getting 9-12 hours, and children ages 13-18 should be getting 8-10 hours of sleep. If you have been struggling with getting your child to bed at their normal "school bed time", try to move that bedtime forward in small increments.

Children thrive off of consistency. Try to develop a bedtime routine. Make your child responsible for what they need to get done before bed. Have your child pick out their clothes and pack their bookbag for the following day, take a bath/shower, put on their pajamas, and brush their teeth. Try to pick calming activities that you can do with your child before bed. Turn down the bedroom lights and read a story, ask them about how their day was, talk about what is on the schedule for the following day, or say bedtime prayers. If your child is still having a hard time winding down, think about how much screen time your child is getting. Try to have your child turn off all electronics at least 30-60 minutes before bedtime.

Morning Routine If your child doesn't already have an alarm clock, consider getting them one. Give your child the responsibility of setting it themselves and getting up by themselves. There will still be times you need to nudge them awake, but putting the responsibility on them is a good thing. Until your child is used to their "school routine" it's a good idea to give them extra time to get ready in the morning. After they have the routine down, they can always move their alarm clock back and give themselves some extra minutes of sleep. Just like with bedtime routine, give your child the responsibility to get themselves ready in the morning with brushing their teeth, getting dressed, doing their hair, and eating breakfast.

After School Routine After school routines are different for every family depending on after school activities and parents' jobs. Find a routine that works best for your own family. Despite what your family's schedule looks like, consider prioritizing homework first. Even if your child doesn't have homework, they should be reading a little bit every night. Your child may need a break as soon as they get home from school, but try to avoid having them turn on the electronics as soon as they get home. Electronics can be a big time waster and children have a hard time remembering to do homework later. Instead of an electronic break, opt for an after school snack instead or maybe they have household chores that they could be doing before they jump into more school work. To help with your routine, consider having a visual schedule for your child, whether it is for morning routine, bedtime routine, or after school routine. For younger children, you may want to consider having a picture visual. This visual list will help hold them accountable and give them the responsibility to do it on their own.

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