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7 Back to School Tips
So, I can’t believe I am discussing this but, it’s time to start thinking about heading back to school for those who have children who are school age. Discussing this can be depressing or upsetting for both parents and children.
We have the obvious tips that you can find about school shopping out there, where to buy what and when to buy it. But, I want to share some tips, tricks and advice on getting back to school ready from a teachers perspective. There’s tons of information out there about ways to help your family get ready, but, these tips are from a teachers way of thinking and seem to be great tips overall.
Create a Routine
I talked to a lifelong friend of mine who is now an out of state teacher. She was excited to share her thoughts in hopes to help families ease back in to this time of year. She said that the biggest thing, especially for young kids or children with disabilities is getting them back on a school schedule again. This means adjusting their schedule at least a week before going back to school. You need to adjust their sleep schedule and naps schedule to what school hours will require of them. This really helps the whole first week go by so much smoother.
Get the basics but wait on the full list
She also mentioned that parents don’t need to get the whole back to school shopping list done before school starts. Just get the essentials. She shared that many teachers will have specifics of items that they would like and may request for their class or classroom. Those teachers will hand out a list during the teacher meeting time or the first day of school.
Preparation is key
I also spoke to another teacher friend who wanted to share some information, as well, from both a teachers perspective and a parents perspective! She was so helpful and insightful. She said as parents, make sure you start to make your lunches the night before. This will save you time in the morning and help make sure that your child has lunch figured out for the next day. If you can, check the weather the night before, for the following day.
This will help you plan out what your child should wear for the following day. This should also help slim down the clothing arguments that some parents and children have that delay the school morning. She also touched on the importance of structure and routines. As my previous teacher friend said, start the routine a bit before school starts so the children can ease into the school year successfully.
Think about the ears around
She also wanted to share her thoughts for some back to school tips from a teachers perspective. The biggest thing she wants parents to know is please, please, please, do not complain about the school supply list. Whether you realize it or not, doing this sends a message to the children that school is not important, teachers are not of value and school in’t worth investing in. This is not the idea that you want to portray to your children.
I’ve always got my 2 cents!
Now, I’ve got some tips from myself. Go figure, lol. While I do not have any children old enough to go to school yet, I have done my fair share of babysitting through the years and I have two much younger (still in Elementary and Middle School) siblings.
Designate evening time
I just want to share that I think it is important to set up a “homework time” and “activity time” for children after school. I know that it can be exhausting physically and mentally for kids to be in school all day and then come home and have to go straight back to homework. While this may be necessary for times sake.
I do think it is necessary to have a “play/activity” break. They need to expel some energy that they’ve had pent up all day before they get back to cracking down on the homework. I understand that sometimes, some children need to keep the motion going or they can’t get started again on school work. But, not all kids are this way. I guess, it’s just important for you to monitor what type of kid you have and adjust accordingly.
Importance of Family Time
I also feel that it is important to designate Family Time. Family time should be spent together, without electronics, talking about your day (keeping mentally up to date with school assignments, tests, friendships, etc), playing a game and spending time together. This will help your relationships continue to build with your spouse, children and family as a whole. Notice how I send without electronics? I know, sometimes parents use electronics as the kids babysitters, but, we really need to get out of that habit. No matter how exhausted you may be. I know it can be hard at times, but that’s life of a parent, right?
If you’re having trouble getting your kids to open up and talk about their school days, check out these conversation starters that may help you all increase the open family time and conversations.
One thing I also do that helps my little family and I’m sure would help any family with kids, is to create a family calendar to keep the school, sport and family activities straight. Especially as the kids get older, this will help keep the organization in to your lives that you are desperately seeking. I love using our planner for our little family of three.
You may want to get your kids to help you pick out a planner. This could make them feel included in on the organization and know that they need to update you with any changes in school schedules, sports practices, tests, etc. I use different color ink in my pens for each different person to make it super easy to look at the planner quickly and know what’s going on and who is doing what, where and when.
I know we loved using Target for back to school shopping and I have heard that they are running some great back to school supply shopping sales. If you’re interested in buying things online, they’re offering free shipping for online orders over $35.00 or more.
I’ve also heard that Crazy 8 has a great new denim collection, just in time for back to school shopping! This collections adds 7 new washes to your favorite fits. Their clothing is age appropriate (principal and mom approved). Crazy 8 is a great brand and we love to dress our family in it. Make sure to visit the Crazy 8 site to check out all the new trending clothing styles and get your hands on some of those adorable outfits for your children. I love that new denim collection. It is totally worth checking out.
Another favorite place for back to school clothing shopping is Gymboree!!! We love Gymboree for my daughter but my mom loves to take my (much younger) siblings to Gymboree for her new clothes for school time. Gymboree is always a fun place for the kids to “go shopping” too. They have a little tv and entertainment area at the back of most stores so the children can be entertained while the adults feel free to browse and find all the clothing items that they’re looking for. Make sure to check out the Gymboree Back To School Collection for sure- PLUS right now they’re doing a sale- 25 percent off all BTS items!!! WAHOOOOOO.
But what about mom and dad sanity?!
These are a bunch of tips from myself and from a few teacher friends of mine that I hope help you transition back into the back to school spirit. If talking back to school stuff makes you feel like you need a big ol’ glass of wine (like I do), feel free to check out this wine delivery service through California Wine Club!
I mean, you know you’re going to need a few bottles to make it through the school year. So, you might as well make it easy on yourself and just have it auto delivered. That sounds pretty awesome to me. We are totally hopping on this right now! Stay tuned for our nice wine pictures as we skate through the school year.