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Back to School Preparations: A Top Ten List

Young girl preparing to go back to school with her mother

It’s back to school time again! Sure, it is only August, but to beat a tired cliché, time does have a tendency to fly, especially where children and summer are concerned. School bells will soon be ringing, and your child (whether s/he likes it or not) will be heading off to school.

So why not help your child be prepared to return to the world of academia? Kids can easily shift into the right gear for learning, even before they head back to school.

Here’s a handy top-ten list to get your family prepared:

  1. Start the morning off right. Begin by waking your kids up at what will be their regular morning wake-up time. If they don’t have an alarm clock, why not get them their own and let them take responsibility for waking up in the morning?
  2. Have a good breakfast. Research has shown us time and again that a nutritious breakfast can give kids the energy they need to be mentally alert all day. Put away the sugary cereals and make a healthy breakfast part of your daily habit.
  3. Choose clothing the night before. Avoid those last-minute searches for her green socks, or his favorite cap. If you are selecting the wardrobe, give your child a few options and let them choose. They’ll feel more in-charge of the process when they think that they are making the decisions.
  4. Pack a healthy lunch. Even though school isn’t in session yet, you can help your kids get used to brown bagging it by having their lunch labeled and ready to go.
  5. Eat at the right time. Start eating lunch at the same time as the school does. You can easily help your child’s stomach get on a schedule so that little bellies don’t grumble while they are in a classroom. You want them focused on learning, not on their hunger.
  6. Turn off the TV. Start creating a homework routine now by turning off the TV during the after-school hours. Why not sit at the table together and discuss what you did during the day?
  7. Play board or word games. Strategies used during game play can help young minds stay focused. Discuss strategies to verbalize internal thought processes.
  8. Set bedtimes. Just as important as a regular morning routine is a reliable bedtime. Kids are often too busy playing to recognize that they are tired. Sure, putting them to bed early may not make you the most popular parent, but their growing bodies will thank you, especially with the earlier wake up time!
  9. Read. Help them develop a love a reading during the summer that will pay-off during the school year. This is pretty easy as kids are natural mimics. When they see you reading, they are more likely to pick up a book and spend quality time with the written word.
  10. Get new gear for the school year. Take them shopping for back-to-school supplies. This may seem a departure from the other items in this list, as it is not about routines or learning habits. But new school supplies like backpacks, binders, and pencil cases do hold a certain magic for getting kids excited about hearing the school bell ring again.


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