August is quickly approaching and as the kids are in full summer swing some moms are counting down the days that the kids are back in school. My children are not of school-age yet, but I have heard as a teacher the many joyous remarks from parents how excited they were to get back in the school year routine.
Becoming a parent made me a better teacher. I could finally understand why some things I formally thought were “overbearing” or “downright crazy” such as a parent calling to see if their 7-year-old was happy that day or if their 5-year-old has gone to the restroom at all. But, now that I am a parent, I totally get it and sometimes I am one of those moms.
Here are some tips from a teacher to prepare yourself and your kids to get back into that school routine.
Bedtime – Yes summer is fun! It’s light late and everyone gets to stay up later and sleep in later. But as soon as you can, even a month before school starts, try to get the kids back into that early bedtime early wake routine. Luckily there isn’t a whole lot going on the first few weeks of school, but I have dealt with many tired and cranky kids because they are still on “summer time”.
Breakfast – Summer is laid back and relaxed and it’s easy to just skip breakfast and snack instead. Everyone is sleeping, they can just snack and wait for lunch, one less meal for you to worry about, right? Along with bedtime get back into the routine of having breakfast. It’s true, breakfast is the most important meal of the day! It gives kids the fuel they need to focus in the morning and get through that school day. I have had students complain about stomach aches right when they get to school. The first thing I ask them is, “Did you eat breakfast”?
Supplies – A parent’s worst nightmare! Do they really use all this stuff? Most of the time, the answer is yes! But if your hesitant to buy EVERYTHING on the list, contact the teacher and ask what they really need? It’s also a good idea to ask if there is anything not on the list you can get for them. Teachers are left purchasing a lot with their own money to make sure your child gets everything they need.
Label – If you do not want to buy 10 lunchboxes this school year, label it. Label it in more than one place. Things spill and wash off the sharpie you wrote in the beginning of the year. Anything your child brings to school with them, LABEL, if you want to see it again.
Contact – As a teacher my biggest objective each year is to keep open communication with the parents. Now as a parent myself that objective has grown even more. Teachers have 20 students to worry about + 40 parents and sometimes even grandparents or other guardians on top of that. If you want to know something about your child contact the teacher. Reach out, your question won’t get answered unless you ask.
Anxiety – There is some anxiety for children and parents alike about a new school year. Will my child have any friends in their class? Will they like their teacher? Will I like the teacher? If your children see you anxious they will become anxious. Try to talk as positively as you can about the new school year. Give your child time to get to know the teacher and students before making any changes.
A new school year is on the way! Soak up those last few moments of summer and enjoy the new year ahead.