Summer is winding down, which means kids will soon be heading back to school. Whether your child is starting kindergarten or pursuing post-secondary education, preparation for the big first day can be nerve wracking. Getting sleep schedules back under control is a given, but here are some additional tips to help your child prepare for the start of another school year.
Getting younger children excited to return to school can be hit or miss. Aim for a hit by discussing with your child the exciting things he or she will get to do and learn in the upcoming year. Talk about the classmates they’ll see. Go one step further by arranging a late summer gathering with friends so your child can re-establish or make new connections.
Be sure to spend extra time together the last week or two before school starts and reminisce about your summer fun. Then regularly set aside time to catch up, play a quick game, or read together after the year begins.
Shift into school mode a few different ways. Find out about any extracurriculars or school activities in which your child may want to participate. Shop together for school supplies. Let your child pick out his or her own backpack, lunchbox, or outfits to establish some independence and responsibility.
A couple of tips for parents, too:
- Stay organized by creating a file or folder system for school information
- Have a plan in place for the day(s) when your child is sick
- Write a quick “hi” or note of encouragement and put it in your child’s lunchbox
- Don’t forget to commemorate the day with that all-important “first day” photo
The biggest adjustment for older kids usually is sleep patterns. As such, try to convince your teen to get reacquainted with an early-morning alarm at least a week before the first day.
If starting at a new school, attending orientation is recommended. This will help your teen plan routes from one class to the next, find the closest restroom, and figure out where to go for assemblies. Also, locating the locker to master the combination lock is a smart move.
When that class schedule arrives, your high schooler should talk to friends to see if any of them have the same classes. Otherwise, we suggest picking a spot to meet up with buddies before (and after) school to pal around or share class notes.
Campuses can be large and expansive, so finding classrooms is vital to prevent time crunches. Show up to class early and bring a notebook. College is more straightforward than high school, so first-day assignments are almost a given.
When that homework comes in, get going on it. Before the end of the first week, there likely will be a handful of assignments and papers due. Keep up with professors by maintaining the workload. And don’t wait for the last minute; save the cramming sessions for finals week (wink).
Welcome visitors by propping open your dorm room door. Meeting people and making friends is a significant part of the college experience. When the inevitable study break is needed, you’ll already know who’s got time to hang out.
Home or away, our TeleHealth Services are always an option for seeking support at your convenience. Healthcare services are provided via private two-way audio and video communication from your home or office, in your dorm room, or while on the go. Meeting with your therapist is easier than ever, and TeleHealth is covered by your insurance.
For more on ways Healthwise can help you or your child manage the adjustments of a new school year, contact us. We also offer many other services that focus on the overall health and wellness of you, your child, your relationship, and your family.