Sunny summer days provide relaxation, which makes the thought of a new school year a bit overwhelming. Use these strategies with your children to provide them with a smooth transition as the summer ends and the school year begins.
A School Fieldtrip
Set aside time with your child to visit the school before the first day of school. This can be helpful for kids who have moved to a new community or are beginning kindergarten, junior high or high school. Identify important landmarks, such as the cafeteria, library, bathrooms, and specific classrooms. Knowing this information in advance can help your child feel better about beginning the year in a new school.
Organize a Homework Space
As with other routines, homework guidelines should be set up sooner rather than later. Decide with your kids the best ways for them to finish their homework when getting home from school, answering these important questions in the process – should they get a snack before starting homework? Where should homework be finished? Will the dining room table work well, or will a quiet bedroom work better? Setting up a homework space and routine will keep arguments to a minimum while helping your children feel successful in their schoolwork.
Papers and projects can be strewn throughout the house, especially as the school year gets underway. Designate specific spots for backpacks, homework folders, and lunch boxes or bags to minimize losing them. Set up a basket or bin for your children to put important papers for you to see and/or sign, then go through that bin each day once your kids have started their homework. Set up a calendar and write down important dates and commitments ahead of time to help everyone stay on track, and post it in a place where everyone can see it each day.
Make Medical Appointments
It’s essential that your children are physically as well as mentally prepared to start school. Make an appointment with the pediatrician for a general physical for your child, and get any vaccinations required by the school district. Request that your children be given standard sight and hearing tests, and use this opportunity to discuss any concerns or issues you may have about your kids. Along with the pediatrician, make an appointment for them to visit the dentist for regular exams and teeth cleaning. With these important preparations, their bright, healthy smiles will help them start the new school year right!
Kelly is a busy mom of two boys getting ready to start a new school year. Visit Dr. Sue Chadwick Walker, a Dentist in Milwaukie, Oregon for more information on how to keep kids’ smiles healthy all year long.