So, here we are, heading towards the end of the summer holidays. It doesn’t feel like five minutes since the bell rang at the end of term but there’s no denying it, the autumn term is just around the corner. Starting school again is a stressful time for you as a parent and of course your child. But what can you do to make the transition of flip-flops and swimsuits into school shoes and book bags, as easy as possible for them?
Read on for some handy tips and helpful advice.
Make sure YOU have everything you need
When your children head off to school you have to be prepared for when they bring back their first lot of homework. It can strike fear and dread into many parents whose school days are far behind them! So, you need to be ready for everything they throw at you. Do you need any more printer cartridges in your printer? Do you have enough paper, pens and stationary at the ready? Don’t forget your maths equipment and calculators for those dreaded math problems!
Dust off those books
If your children haven’t read a book all summer, then now is the time to dust off those storybooks and make a start. Even if it’s just a couple of pages on an evening or before lunch – getting them back into the habit of reading and working on tricky words again will have them prepared for September and make everything run much more smoothly.
Get them to bed
Most children stay up past their bedtimes during the summer holidays. After all, summer is a time for family and enjoying the long sunny days and light evenings to the full, without the pressure of school. Getting your children back into a normal bedtime routine will make the first week of school so much easier for both of you. Make a start during the second to last week of the holidays. Then they’ll be properly rested for the busy weeks ahead.
Bring back meal times
Summer means lots of grazing, snacks and treats while you’re out and about, late evening meals and of course BBQs. Now is a good time to reinforce proper meal times and get everyone sitting back at the table enjoying a meal together. Try to reintroduce snack times to match the times they would snack at school – such as 10.30, and then 3.30 after school. It’ll stop them feeling hungry and distracted during their first week back.
This one is difficult, I know. But the longer you put it off the harder it is to get back on track. The Autumn term brings with it lots of important dates at school, at work and Dr’s appointments. So get yourself a family planner or calendar and make a note of the dates as they appear. Make room on your notice board for permission slips, locate long-lost book bags and lunchboxes. The sooner you get this stuff organised, the easier the transition into the Autumn term will be for everyone.
An added tip just for parents
Then take some time for you
If like me, you have been tirelessly trying to work from home and juggle the kids at the same time, or even heading into the office and juggling childcare – the first few days are a perfect time to breathe a sigh of relief, pat yourself on the back for keeping all balls in the air and everyone alive, then have a little time for you.
Head to the hairdressers, enjoy a hot cuppa or even just grab the TV remote and binge watch your favourite show you’ve been missing for the past 6 weeks BUT make sure you set an alarm to collect the children on time – with the house so quiet you may fall asleep.