As the final few weeks of summer approach, you’re likely starting to get your children prepared for the idea that they’ll soon be returning to class. The first few weeks of back to school can either be filled with excitement or dread. If your child has the back to school blues, try some of these tips to help get them excited for the beginning of the new school year.
Let them pick out their own back to school styles. Think back to when you were little on the first day of school and everyone was checking out each other’s new outfits. Your children will want to feel special on the first day of school and a few new looks will give them that much needed boost of confidence. Bring them along with you when going back to school shopping and teach them some life skills by giving them a budget and a shopping list to practice math and organization.
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Get them a new haircut. Has your child been begging you to let them change their hairstyle? Now might be the perfect time. New school years are all about new beginnings and a new haircut is a great way to represent that fresh start. Have them look at popular kids hairstyles online (Pinterest is a great resource), then take them to a local barber or salon to get their do done right! They’ll feel like a big kid knowing they picked out their own style and will be ready to rock to halls.
Set up play dates. Whether your child is looking for new friends or rekindling friendships from previous years, as soon as the class roster comes out, call or email a few parents to schedule some playdates. Once they get together, the kids should start to remember all the fun aspects of going to school. As an added benefit, they’re also guaranteed to have at least one buddy on the first day of school.
Sign up for extracurricular activities. Even if your child isn’t looking forward to returning to the classroom, they might be looking forward to sports, theater, music or other after-school activities. With so many types of activities to choose from, there’s bound to be something for children of all ages, capabilities and interests. “Encouraging kids to get involved in extracurricular activities and after-school programs can help foster school spirit, especially at the beginning of the school year when back-to-school apprehension can run high,” says Dr. Fran Walfish, child and family psychotherapist and author of The Self-Aware Parent.
Extracurricular activities are also a great place for children to make new friends who share similar interests. Waking up with something to look forward to after school will motivate your children to get up and go learn every day!
Create back to school crafts. Don’t wait until the first day of school to dive into some neat art projects. Together, you and your kids can create some handy school tools like a cool purse or pencil case from construction foam, a “study sign” to hang on their door to let everyone know homework is in progress, or even some nice gifts to hand out to the whole class on the first day back. There’s no better way to make a first impression with new kids (and maybe even some new friends) with a thoughtful welcome back treat.
Creative breakfasts. Plan out special breakfasts for the first day of school so they’ll be excited to get up in the morning to see what you made. If you can, get the kids in on the fun and let them help plan the menu, shop for ingredients or even help with cooking. It will take their mind off anything causing them anxiety about the first day and make them feel important. For a little foodspiration, click here to see some super fun breakfast ideas.
Download a new app. Let Daniel Tiger help your child adjust back to a school sleep schedule with games about morning and nighttime routines, sing-a-long songs and a musical timer to help keep routines on-track. Get more info here.
Organize their study space. Providing your child with a designated space in your home for studying and homework and letting them decorate and organize it will get their minds in gear for learning. Make sure they are as involved in the process as possible so the space can both express their personalities and address their needs. Together, you can create a special study nook that will put them on the path to academic success.
Check off their summer bucket list. As summer winds down, ask your kids if there is anything they would like to prioritize during their last school-free days. You can create a list of activities you can complete, within reason, before the starting bell rings. Maybe they wanted to go camping but the family couldn’t get around to it. Have an impromptu backyard camp-out with hot dogs and s’mores! Not only are you take their minds off of school worries, you’re creating memories that will last a lifetime.
With these 9 tips and tricks your children will be begging you to go back to school!
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