Written by: Amanda Levison, M.S., LMHC, LPC, CCBT
School is back in session, and the ease of summer has come to an end. Here are some simple tips from your therapist in Harrisburg, PA, for a successful school year and less frustration between you and your children are as easy as:
Set up a bedtime and wake-up routine in advance. Working on going to bed at a designated time and waking up when the child needs to get ready for school can be done at least two weeks before school starts. This will get kids (and possibly yourself) back into the swing of early school hours. This will make mornings easier and regulate sleep as a bonus.
Get to know new teachers. Getting to know teachers before the school year starts can help ease anxieties children may face when starting a new grade. This is important for parents as well, to learn their teaching style and comfort with communication. Parents can also get to know what the year's layout will look like and the teacher's expectations of them.
Plan healthy lunches and snacks together. Meal prepping can be fun for kids to get a say in what they pack for school. Children will be more inclined to incorporate healthier options if they have a sense of control over the situation. Incorporating these healthy habits can positively affect other members of the family, encouraging them to eat healthier.
Organize clothing the night before. Having your child help pick out their clothes for school the night before gives them a good nightly routine, and they will be satisfied they get to help. This will also help to keep mornings moving, not having to spend time looking through clothes.
Set up a staging area for bags and school supplies to stay organized. Having a designated area for school supplies encourages excellent organizational skills and reduces the risk of losing school papers. Parents and kids can quickly locate backpacks, homework, other essential documents, and school supplies for projects.
Update medical records Have a copy of updated medical records and shot records ready for the first day of school. Having a hard copy and a digital copy is an excellent way to play it safe. In the case of an emergency, the school may need a record of medications or medical records to treat the child properly.
Talk to your kids about bullying. Making your child aware of what bullying is and the best way to avoid it. Teaching them how it can harm others will show them that they need to show others compassion. Teaching them about bullying teaches them how to recognize when someone might be bullying and who to go to for help.
Talk to them about their day. Asking a child how their day is going or was gives them an outlet to express excitement or anxiety over things that may have happened. This shows them that you are an active participant in their daily wellbeing, and they can come to you with any news or concerns they have.