Now is the time to start easing into back-to-school mode. Here’s how.
You and your children may not be ready to think about the start of a new school year quite yet as you enjoy the end of summer. But before you know it, that day will be here.
Rather than ignoring the fact that school is about to begin as you savor your last lazy days of fun and relaxation, it’s best to start getting everyone prepared for the upcoming school year. Don’t wait until the night before classes begin to set new bedtimes or make sure everyone has what they need to get on the bus in the morning. Beginning the transition to school-mode now can get everyone looking forward to the changes to come and may help reduce stress.
Here are some tips for making the transition to back-to-school mode easier:
- Slowly change daily routines. You can’t expect everyone to instantly be able to go to bed and wake up early when school begins after an unstructured summer schedule. Start modifying sleep schedules a couple of weeks before the start of school, moving bedtimes and wake-times up by about 10-15 minutes a day.
- Shop for supplies. Most schools send home a list of supplies kids will need in school so get the task done early. This will help get kids excited for a new school year and will make shopping less stressful. If your kids need supplies or equipment for other fall activities, now is a good time to shop for those, too. Make shopping a family affair so kids can pick out their own stuff.
- Connect with classmates. If your children haven’t seen much of their school friends this summer, start scheduling some get-togethers now. This will help get kids excited to head back to school and see their friends. You can also plan a back-to-school party for a few of your kids’ friends so they can all look forward to being together again.
- Plan after-school activities. The beginning of the school year is not just about what goes on during the school day. There are also new activities, sports and after-school programs to plan for. Talk to kids about what activities they want to do, figure out what fits in everyone’s schedule and then sign up before slots are filled. Also make sure you have all supplies or equipment they need to participate.
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Date Last Reviewed: June 11, 2019
Editorial Review: Andrea Cohen, Editorial Director, Baldwin Publishing, Inc. Contact Editor
Medical Review: Perry Pitkow, MD