I think the first day of school is as exiting for the parents as it is for the children! But along with the excitement there are some fears, doubts and anxiety. For both the parent and the student. I try to start preparing my kids for school about a month ahead of time. We work on our academic skills, we read about school, we talk about teachers, we talk about drop off time and pick up time, we start working on a good sleep pattern, and we have fun doing all of it, well, exept for the sleep thing. Ha Ha! Here are some of the other things that I do to get my kids ready for the first day of school.
1. For the preschooler, I go to the library and get some books that talk about the first day of school. Here is a list of some of my favorites. These will help them start a dialog with you about things that they may be nervous about. Talk to them about the school room. What they can find when they are there. What their teacher will be like. What their friends will be like. This will all help them prepare for what it will be like.
2. Pick out a special outfit together. It’s important that your child feels good about themselves. This will help them feel more confident, and confidence helps everything! They will feel more comfortable approaching new children and making friends.
3. Get the “School Hair Cut” at least 2 weeks ahead of time. That way if something is a little too short (like the bangs) they will have time to grow out a little bit, also boosting confidence!
4. Get the list of things your child will need for their classroom as soon as possible. Take your child with you shopping for these supplies so they can choose the colors they like. You might miss out on all the great sales if you don’t do this early enough! Not to mention how horribly picked over everything is if you wait too long.
5. Get back on schedule about 2 weeks before school starts. Prepare special breakfasts so your kids will wake up earlier than they are used to during the summer months. Get completely ready by the time you would have to leave for school so you can work out morning kinks. Go to bed earlier too! You don’t want a groggy child the first day of school, so you have to reprogram their internal clocks!!
6. The night before school starts, lay out their outfits, find socks and shoes, jewelry, hair bows, etc. so there is no feeling rushed in the morning! Also, pack the backpacks the night before. This will make your school mornings run more smoothly.
7. My kids love to draw a picture for their teacher so they can give it to them on the first day of school. On the back of the picture, you could write a note to the teacher about your child (kind of like an All About Me page). Write down the things they like, and maybe some things they are nervous about. I bet the teacher will address these concerns in the morning orientation.
8. Tell your children stories about your first day’s of school when you were a child. They will love learning all about how mommy was nervous about school too!
Above all, don’t stress your child out!! Just have fun and speak positively about everything! School is fun. What are somethings you do to get your children ready for school?