Easing back into a school routine
August 10, 2021
Hard to believe it’s back-to-school time again! Those lazy days of summer with little or no routine are winding down and it’s time for a bit of structure to make going back to school less hectic. Here’s how you can get a jump start on making those early mornings run smoothly.
One thing to remember is that feelings of apprehension – for both children and parents – are normal. It’s important to help your children know they’re not alone in this experience! Getting back into a school routine is hard for everyone.
Get familiar with new surroundings
Maybe you’ve just moved into an Ideal neighborhood. If so, chances are good your kids are starting in a new school or perhaps taking the bus for the first time; help familiarize them with their new surroundings. Show them where the school is; drive the route to and from school several times to help them get to know the area. Make sure they understand where the bus stop is and rules for riding the bus. If you already have your student’s schedule, find each room so your kids aren’t nervous on that first day. This is especially important for students new to middle school or junior high where they attend multiple classes.
Establish a sleep schedule
Consistency is a big deal, and so is plenty of rest. A sleep schedule ideally takes a couple of weeks to take hold, so start working on it now. Try to keep a consistent schedule, even on weekends. To avoid anxieties that can come out at bedtime, help your children create sleep routines that calm their minds and prepare them for bed and peaceful rest.
Create a morning routine
Morning routines set up a successful day for the entire family. It simply makes life easier if you know what you’re supposed to do and when you’re supposed to do it. So decrease that stress! Teach your kids what they’re supposed to do … like getting up and out of bed, getting dressed, eating breakfast, brushing teeth. And if there’s time, maybe they get to go outside or watch screens for a few minutes if their other activities have been completed.
Have your kids make their own lunch
Place everything in an accessible area of the fridge so kids can find those healthy lunch choices. Keep food within easy reach and include appropriate sides and snacks. Packing up your own lunch alongside them is a great way for them to learn how to make their own.
Dedicate a place for school stuff
Keep track of backpacks, supplies, lunchboxes, even school forms, by establishing a specific place in your home for them. Stop the morning scramble of searching for misplaced items by keeping those school necessities in one established place.
Yes, Virginia, there will be homework
It’s inevitable that your children will have homework. But like a morning routine, a structured homework schedule can help them stay on track and focused. Completing homework as soon as school is over (and with parental support) will take advantage of daylight hours and provide encouragement and help when needed. A snack is a great way to keep up energy while working through those tough math problems!
To mask or not to mask
Everyone is still anxious about Covid-19, and rightly so. Here’s a school morning checklist from the Oklahoma County Health Department:
- If your child has a temperature of 100.4 degrees or higher, they should not go to school.
- If your child has taken a Covid-19 test and the results have not come in yet, they should stay home until you receive a negative test result.
- Make sure your child does not have signs of illness, like a continuous cough, diarrhea, severe headache, vomiting, or body aches.
- If your child has had close contact to a Covid-19 case, they should not go to school.
All of us at Ideal Homes & Neighborhoods hope your school year gets off to a great start!