After a long summer holiday it can be hard to return to the routine and effort of school days, whether you are an adult or a child! Here is a quick guide to getting children back into the school mindset!
Routine is the most important thing for adults and children when getting back into the school mindset. Building a routine in before the end of the holidays makes the return to school easier, so there is less for your child to worry about.
Getting up early enough is important, so build this into routine at least a week before returning to school, as it is easy to slip into later nights and later get ups during the holiday. Tiredness will add to the stress and anxiety about the return to school, so ensure your child is getting plenty of sleep in preparation, and then gets up (and dressed) for the right time for school to start.
Meal times are something I struggle with upon the return to the school day as it seems I am always hungry. Start sticking to the times of the school day for snacks and lunch to ensure your child doesn’t struggle with being hungry when they are back in lessons.
Bed time routines are also important. Children, especially teenagers, won’t want to go to bed early in the holidays but it is vital they get enough sleep to get up early in order to form a routine before school restarts. I recommend building in half an hour before bed time for brushing teeth, bed time stories or for older children their own chance to read or listen to music. Try and avoid iPad’s as they emit blue light which can make it harder to go to sleep.
Prepare a study space
Homework is a necessary part of school and every child needs somewhere to do their homework. It may be that they had a space, but it could have been used for a different purpose over summer, or buried under toys. Clear the space together and make it pleasant to be in. Maybe new stickers or post it notes could be purchased. Maybe prepare a homework reward chart and agree on a reward for completing all homework, such as an activity out of the house or an amount of time playing on the computer or iPad, or even as a way to earn pocket money. Rewarding homework is a positive experience for young and older children, so try it with teenagers too. Homework reward charts can be found on the internet and downloaded for free so you can print them in preparation or as needed. Stationery- a child can never have enough stationery before school starts again. Pens, pencils and felt tips can be chosen together as positive preparation for the return to school.
Practice some skills in the weeks before school starts again. The skills will depend on your child’s preferences. Some children are quite happy to read a new book to practice literacy where as some would prefer not to. Try books on an iPad or Kindle so they can use technology to enhance the experience. If your child is more creative, write a story, or keep a diary of what they do in the last few weeks of holiday. Numeracy is also important, so use Apps or games to enhance skills. There are also maths puzzles available on the internet which can be fun while using numeracy skills to solve the puzzles. Not forgetting science, there are also internet games which use science skills too!
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