By Fatima Ayyaz
As September comes closer, parents start getting their heads wrapped around what I call a "back to school" effect. Well, it's a thing that almost all of us as parents face every year starting from kids' pre-school year. Where some children find going back to school super fun and are actually interested in it, a majority don't want the vacations to end. As the days come closer, most of us start hearing sentences like "Mom, I don't want to go!", or “I don't want vacations to end." Etc.
This transition time is not only difficult for children, but it is far more stressful for parents. But it's inevitable! No matter how many years pass by, every new year brings new back to school transition struggles.
So, to help you deal with this transition like a pro, here are a few simple tips:
Review information: The first and foremost thing you need to do is take some time to review the information provided by the school carefully. Make mental notes about the teachers' names, necessary school supplies, after school activities, transportation, school calendar, etc. Once you have gone through every information, you will feel confident and in control of the situation. Now you know what to expect.
Buying school supplies: Buying school supplies is probably the only thing kids find interesting about the whole back to school thing. So, make a list of important supplies, get your car keys, and take your kids for back to school shopping. Shopping is a therapy, even for kids. It will set things in motion for them, and they will realize its finally happening.
Breakfast and bedtime routine: Summer vacations tend to spoil children's' routines. And when the school re-opens, children suffer adjusting to the new routine. It's the part that makes the whole transition a challenging process. So, start rescheduling your child's breakfast and bedtime routine at least a week before the school re-opens. A week is an ample time to let them smoothly glide through the transition.
Find them a new spot for study: To prepare and encourage children for school and study, find a nice, noise-free spot in your house and designate it for doing homework and studying. It can be a room or even your dining table, whatever suits you better. Let them sit in that place for an hour or so. You can have a chat or read them a good book. The whole point is that they get familiar with space.
Encourage other activities: Most children spend their vacations watching TV or playing video games. But once school starts, their routine takes a 360-degree turn. They might not get time to watch TV as much as they used to, and it won't make them happy. So, as the re-opening date draws closer, limit their screen time, and encourage them to do puzzles, play noiseless games, read or indulge in arts.
Change is not always welcomed. And for children, the sudden change of routine, waking up early, mounds of homework and extra-curricular activities are difficult to manage. As a parent, we can’t hold off the transition but what we can do is ensure this transition is as smooth as possible.