With summer coming close to an end, this means school is not too far off! Actually the local kids around here go back next week. So close!
While many of the children head back into the classroom, my son is doing something similar… he’s heading off to day care! To me, this is kind of like sending my baby off to school. While I’m sure I’m probably more nervous than he is, there is still the unfamiliarity. So let’s think about how we can cure those Back to School Jitters!
Visit the classroom prior
One of the most important cures in my opinion, is meeting the teacher and visiting the classroom beforehand. Unfortunately, the public school system where I live, does not allow this except for new transfers. Teachers are posted literally the Friday before kids return to school on Monday. However, this isn’t all school systems. It’s just what I’ve witness here in my town.
Prior to taking my son to his day care, we visited there one afternoon. While I chatted with the provider, he was allowed to explore and play with the toys. He opted to “read” a Clifford the Big Red Dog book and play with some Thomas the Tank toys. When I dropped him off for actual care, I could see that this prior visit helped tremendously! My advice? If your child seems nervous, call the school and ask if they can see the classroom, see where their desk will be. Maybe even take a quick peek into the cafeteria, gym, etc. The worst they can do is say no. However, the best they can do is say yes and help put your child at ease.
Shop for supplies together
Got your list of school supplies needed? Good! Now grab your child and head to the store together. I know sometimes parents think it is easier to run errands alone. Trust me, I’m one of those moms! However, let your child assist you in finding their supplies. Let them pick out the designs and colors of what they want. This could make them more excited for school! If you have a little shopper on your hands, they might just be happy to show off what they picked out to their fellow students and teachers.
Let them pick a Kid-Friendly First Day Back to School outfit
One of my favorite parts of heading back to school (okay, probably my only favorite part), was getting to pick out my First Day outfit. Let your child experience the thrill of picking their own outfit. Again, this is great for the self-esteem know that they did it themselves. Don’t trust your child’s fashion sense? Give them options. Put together 6 outfits yourself and let them pick! However, make sure the outfit is kid-friendly. By this I mean, make sure they can handle that zipper or button by themselves. If that shoe falls off, will they be able to easily tie or put it back on themselves? Sure that outfit is cute, but would be it comfortable for your child to wear all day at school? Just questions to ask yourself when helping your child with this task!
Practice the School Route
Is your child a walker? Walk with them the route to school prior to the First Day! Practice this route several times. Let them lead and see if they got it down! Are you driving your kids to school? Again, practice the route, and show them exactly the way to school. After a few times, while driving, ask them to give you directions and “show” you the way. If your child is riding the bus, it may be helpful to visit their bus stop several times before they end up jumping on that big ole yellow machine!
Throw a Back to School Celebration
The night before school starts, took a special dinner! Have a celebration and make sure your child sees going back to school as a positive. Whip out fun decorations, bake a special cake, and play some fun games! Then cook another special dinner later that night after the First Day. Who knows, this may become a tradition in your household!
Practice the School Schedule
Has your child been sleeping in all summer? Pull out the alarm clock! It is better to put them on the school schedule prior to starting. Let your child get used to waking up in time and going to bed early. Sure in the summer we may be more relaxed about a schedule, but this doesn’t mean your child’s First Day has to be the first day of that routine. Ease them into their new time schedule beforehand.