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8 Tips to Transition from Summer to School

Amber Brandt  |  July 25, 2016

The beginning of a new school year can be very exciting, and also overwhelming. It’s a lot for kids (and their parents) to trade long summer evenings, camping and cookouts for routines, early bed times and homework. Here are a few tips that might help to smooth out the transition.

  1. Adopt a routine early. Don’t wait until the day before school starts to institute an earlier bedtime or morning alarm. Give your family a week or two to transition into earlier nights and mornings. Establish a routine of evening bathing and laying out your child’s clothing a couple of weeks in advance.
  2. Think positive. If your child is experiencing back-to-school anxiety, remind them of how much fun they’ll have reconnecting with school friends they may not have seen for a couple of months, or how much they enjoyed gym last year. Having something positive to look forward to can help brighten their perspective.
  3. Clear the schedule. Simplify your evenings and weekend commitments during the first couple of weeks of school. The added breathing room will do your family good.
  4. Get organized. Consider buying plastic tubs, drawer systems, binders or labels to help keep school papers organized. This will keep your spaces and mind from getting too cluttered.
  5. Keep dinner easy. Consider grilling out, preparing simple crock pot meals or ordering in during the first week of school. This will ease evening pressure and allow your family plenty of time to decompress from the new daily schedule.
  6. Make space for homework. Developing a good homework routine can help lessen feet-dragging. Establish a consistent work space and communicate clear boundaries about when technology or TV needs to be switched off.
  7. Avoid morning madness. Starting each morning on the right foot can help set the tone for your child’s day. Consider staying up an extra 10 minutes to set the breakfast table, go through your child’s backpack or pack a lunch to eliminate added pressure for the morning.
  8. Give some grace. Stress on one member of the family impacts the whole family, but remembering to take a deep breath, understanding the circumstances, and even finding a way to laugh together can help make everyone feel more at ease.