This is our last week before school starts and I have mixed feelings. On one hand, I’m ready for my kids to be somewhere else for part of the day. On the other hand, we’ve all had a great summer together and have fallen into a new, go-with-the-flow type of routine that I’ve come to enjoy.
Can I say that I am a little nervous about how this earlier bedtime thing is going to go? My kids have gotten used to staying up until 930/10pm. I’ll be pushing that way up to about 8pm starting tonight. Ouch! However, I have started doing a few things that I think will help in the long run; with much less resistance from the kiddos, less stressful mornings, and a much happier household. Want a peek into some of my easy tips for going back to school this year? Here you go!
1. Start with an earlier bedtime a few days before school actually begins or even, a week before. This will help get your kids in the mindset of having to slow down and settle down quite a bit earlier than they’re used to. To soften the resistance this might cause…pick out a special book you can read with your child right before bedtime. I like to pick up a new book that is geared specifically towards the grade he/she will be going into. This helps with easing fears, worries, and anxieties about going back to school.
2. Lay clothes out the night before. I’m sure you’ve heard this one many times…I have too. But I must admit, I’ve never actually done it. Having a son with ADHD has changed my mind about this one. Tonight, we will start laying his clothes out the night before to avoid anything that might set him off in the morning. This will help with so many avoidable tantrums…where are my clothes? I can’t find my shoes! I don’t want to wear that! This doesn’t fit! Etc. You get the idea 🙂
3. Wake your children up like you would on the first day of school. Eek. I know. This one is going to be hard but you can do it! I know you love your few minutes in the morning before everyone gets up and you’ve gotten used to your kids sleeping in but trust me (!) it will be worth it to do a ‘mock’ morning to work out any wrinkles that come up. The first day of school has enough worries – make it that much less stressful by preparing yourself and your kids for what the actual day will be like. Go through the entire morning routine as if it were the actual day…wake up, breakfast, get dressed, brush teeth, etc.
4. Get your lunch plan in order. I send both of my kids to school with lunch from home. Why? Well, it’s cheaper and once I found out my son was racking up quite a bill at school…I nixed that right away. I can laugh at that now but I wasn’t laughing about it when I found out how much money he had accumulated in ‘buying’ chocolate milk. I’ve come across a few sites that have made it pretty easy to follow their lunch box ideas. I’ve got these plans ready to go and I will start making them tomorrow, as if school was really starting. I may even post a few pictures of the lunches if I get around to it 🙂
5. Nix the electronics. Ugh. This one is going to sting. But seriously. Nix the electronics during school hours (8-3 or so..) If you can’t commit to getting rid of all electronics just yet – try and scale back a little bit the week before. Give your kids plenty of time to play outside instead or give them some arts and crafts. It will help them adjust to what the first week back at school will really be like. If you don’t want to do the entire week before hand, try a few days prior to the actual day. It will be an easier transition for everyone.
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