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It happens every year—summer sprints by with beach trips, birthday parties, and heaps of warm-weather play time, and suddenly the back-to-school season is just around the corner. After enjoying their off-season fun, your child might be super excited to regale their school friends with tales of summer adventures.
As a parent of young children, however, you might wonder—how can you share in the excitement while staying on top of all the back-to-school tasks?
Fortunately, there are many things you can do as a parent to boost your family’s enthusiasm for the new year and prepare at the same time. Settle in, start reading, and gear up for the best school year yet.
During the summer, your daily routine might be a little more relaxed. As it should—everyone needs some time to unwind and recharge.
However, you don’t want to wait until the night before school starts to get back in the swing of things. Re-familiarizing yourself and your little kid with the school day routine before it starts can set you up for brighter, more cheerful mornings (even if they’re early ones).
To that end, begin to reestablish your school habits a few days or even weeks in advance. Although there might be some grumbling at the start, young children actually benefit from routine.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, routines can:
Let’s examine three ways upcoming school year routines can help you and your family get ready to go back to school.
During those lazy days of summer, everyone stays up a little too late to enjoy the warm weather and longer-lasting sunshine. By the time the season ends, we’ve perfected the art of hitting the snooze button on our alarms. Before it’s time to banish the sleep-ins and get back to early wake-ups, try to return your family to the habit of going to bed and waking up at the same time every day.
Reestablishing your schedule doesn’t have to happen overnight. You can begin working on it in advance by:
By the time school starts, you should have a week or two or regular wake-up times under your belt.
A new school year means your little one is another year older and more capable of taking on a little more personal responsibility. Back-to-school prep time is the perfect opportunity to introduce them to some new skills they can use.
Some of our favorite ways to incorporate responsibility into your new routine include:
These small steps can help your child take on age-appropriate personal responsibilities before school starts.
If your kids have been enjoying a little more screen time during the summer months, now is a superb time to begin scaling it back. But how much is enough?
The American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry recommends no more than one hour of non-educational screen time per day on weekdays.
While there’s no real harm in some screen time indulgences now and then, back-to-school is the perfect time to clean up those habits by:
By the time school starts, your child should be better prepared for some face-to-face classroom engagement.
Another way to help your little one bring on the back-to-school spirit is to allow her to pick out some of her own clothes. Being able to help decide what she’s going to wear gives her a little more responsibility and can help her feel even more excited about showing off some new outfits in the upcoming school year.
Some of the key pieces you’re going to want to stock up on for girls back to school outfits and boys back to school outfits include:
You can involve your little kid in all the planning by sitting down and making a list of everything they need for back-to-school together. This primary school tip serves two purposes—your child can look forward to using their new school supplies, and they’ll learn a little about preparation and planning.
Some things you’ll certainly need on your list include:
A new school year is like starting with a blank slate (or a blank chalkboard). This makes it the perfect time to reorganize around the house and ensure all your school year must-haves are easy to find.
To optimize your back-to-school preparations, tackle a few organizational tasks, such as:
Lastly, don’t forget to set aside time for fun as the new school year approaches. While establishing your school routine and checking things off your list is important, relaxation has a place in your late summer to-do list, too.
Amid your back-to-school preparations, sprinkle in some special time with your kids, such as:
Summer is meant to be fun—but that doesn’t have to end when back-to-school preparations begin.
Preparing in advance (and throwing in some fun along the way) helps to keep your back-to-school tasks stress-free and enjoyable for both you and your kids. Avoid the back-to-school blues by taking it one step at a time and giving your kids time to settle into the new school year routine before school starts.
Along the way, be sure to build some excitement with your back-to-school shopping. At RuffleButts, we have everything your child needs to leap into the new school year feeling confident and comfortable. Check out our amazing selection of clothing for your little fashionista today.
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The Importance of Schedules and Routines. https://eclkc.ohs.acf.hhs.gov/about-us/article/importance-schedules-routines
American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry. Screen Time and Children. https://www.aacap.org/AACAP/Families_and_Youth/Facts_for_Families/FFF-Guide/Children-And-Watching-TV-054.aspx#:~:text=For%20children%202%2D5%2C%20limit,about%20and%20use%20parental%20controls