Back to School - 5 Tips to Help you Ease Back into the Routine
And just like that, the summer vacation, which seemed to stretch ahead for weeks and weeks into the distance, is coming to an end in what feels like the blink of an eye.
Here are some steps you can take to ease children back from full vacation mode so that the first week of school doesn't knock you sideways.
Rev up the routine
Over summer, the break from the school routine is very welcome and lots of kids end up shifting their schedules to 'summer time' which is like being in a different time zone. Mine end up going to bed and waking up as much as two hours later than usual, and getting them back to normal won't happen overnight.
Start in the morning a few days before they are due to go back to school by waking them up a half hour earlier than usual. They should be more likely to crash a bit earlier that night. Then you can do the same over the next couple days so that the shift back to those hectic early morning rises isn't too traumatic.
Bring back the rules
We love those decadent days of summer where no schedule means that you can throw the rules out the window - days of physical activity at the beach or in the park mean that parents can be more lenient about movies running right up to bedtime (or even maybe ice cream and sprinkles for breakfast?).
But those rules need to be reestablished - bringing back no TV or gaming for at least one hour before bedtime and reinstating reading together or a quiet chat about your day, will help children to unwind properly and get back into the right frame of mind for school. In the mornings, bring back nutritious, substantial breakfasts to set your kids up for the day.
Restart brain activity
Don't panic - the summer downtime is an important break for little brains and you shouldn't worry if you haven't been doing 'work' with kids over vacation. However, children's brains do benefit from a bit of exercise to help them get back in the swing of things - for example, you could play shopkeeper and practice adding up the change, try a bit of estimation when you're weighing things in the kitchen, or tackle a quick Komodo kickstart quiz.
We have a host of suggestions for fun summer activities to keep brains active in this blog.
Talk it through
When you're talking with your child, make sure to bring school up in the conversation. Find out their new teacher's name to help them get familiar with who will be teaching them for the next year. Talk about what new things they might be learning, and help them make a list of things they are looking forward to to get into a positive frame of mind about restarting.
Build it up
Going back to school can conjure up all sorts of emotions, and sometimes excitement and anxiety can get all tangled up for kids. Make sure you model the positive emotions, showing that you are happy and excited for them to be going back to school, and this will rub off on your child.
And last but not least, enjoy what's left of the summer vacation!
About Komodo - Komodo is a fun and effective way to boost K-5 math and English skills. Designed for 5 to 11-year-olds to use at home, Komodo uses a 'little and often' approach to learning (15 minutes, three to five times per week) that fits into busy family routines. Komodo helps users develop fluency and confidence in math and language arts - without keeping them at the screen for long.