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Most area schools will start back the week of August 26 and most are having “meet the teacher” and schedule pick-ups next week. Whether you have a kindergartener or a freshman in high school (like I do) there is often some level of anxiety both on the child and the parents. According to family education.com, here are some things you can do to make going make to school easier on you and your child.
1. Get a grip
We all know that our children’s behavior mirrors our own. If mom is acting stressed out, the kids become stressed too. So, it’s important not to act too crazed about the return to school. Build in extra time, put irrelevant projects on hold, stay rested and try to stick closer to your kids.
2. Case the joint
Even if your child knows the school well, it still feels good to get reacquainted. Be sure to go to the “meet the teacher” days at school and spend time walking through the campus. Elementary age kids can get excited about going back to school by spending time on the school playground. You should try to schedule a playground play-date with some of your child’s classmates.
3. Don’t clean the slate
At our house, the start of the school year really feels like the start of the calendar year. It’s easy to fall into the “fresh start … This year will be different mentality. It may seem like a great time to clean up, sort out and set new ground rules for family life. While change is good, the timing requires some reflection. Focus on the start of school, and revisit the other issues after your kids feel more settled.
4. Be reassuring
Talk to your kids about what a great year they are going to have! It’s important to stay positive, but if they have worries, don’t minimize or dismiss them. Listen to their concerns. Small children can experience real fear and separation anxiety. If there are classmates they haven’t seen over the summer, encourage older kids to reconnect or schedule play-dates for the younger ones.
There are also some “logistical” things that parents can do to make school day mornings (which can easily turn into a nightmare) go more smoothly:
Have a great school year!
From one mommy to another,
Jenny Wilson is a mother of three. She teaches a Mommy & Me class at Central Presbyterian Day School, serves on the PCT Board and Children’s Theatre Advisory Committee, the CAC board, the Parent Association Boards of Aikin Elementary and PJH, and is a member of the Paris ISD School Board of Trustees. Mrs. Wilson is a Sunday school teacher at Holy Cross Episcopal Church. She is a certified yoga instructor, and teaches yoga classes 3 days a week.