Whether your kids are a few weeks or a few days into the new school year, it can, without a doubt, be a transitional time for everyone.
Here are 5 things you can do to ensure that this academic year will be a success for both you and your kids.
• Attend any “meet the teacher” or curriculum nights. This helps your child put a face with the teacher’s name helping reduce the “unknowns” and put children, particularly those who feel anxious about the first day, at ease. Curriculum nights allow you as the parent to get involved and have a leg up in understanding what your child will be learning this school year.
• Engage your child in conversations about back-to-school. Ask open-ended questions that get children thinking and talking about their day at school so you can be more in the loop. What was your favorite part of the school day? What’s something new you learned today? Who did you play with today? What challenged you today?
• Re-establish family routines. Starting the school year with a solid routine helps ensure kids are well rested, fed, and feel balanced each day. Regular dinner times, bedtimes and wake-up times are key to a good school year.
• Focus on the excitement of learning. It is important for parents to be positive. Children can pick up on a parent’s negative comments such as “You have to go back to school” or “I know you don’t like school but at least you get to see your friends…” Instead try saying things like “You’re so lucky you get to go learn today” or “I can’t wait to hear what new things you’ll discover.”
• Trust that the teacher is prepared. Students experience many different emotions during the first few weeks of school. Teachers are used to this and will help redirect, engage, and encourage your child. If they really notice anything significant, it’s likely they will get in touch with you to work together as a team.