Going back to school can be a stressful time for both you and your kids. Questions like “Will my children be nervous in class?” or “What can I do to make sure they’re comfortable with a new teacher?” are common. To help with the back to school jitters, we’ve put together a list of 8 things you can do to ensure you and your children feel comfortable as the new year begins.
1. Getting comfortable with class before school starts!
At the parent orientation try to take a photo of their new teacher and classroom. By showing your children these photos beforehand, they’ll feel more familiar with their new place of learning before they step foot in the room. And, they won’t feel like you're leaving them with a stranger on the first day!
2. Taking a trip to the school and its neighborhood before school starts helps, too!
Ease your children into the routine by visiting the school before the year starts. Even if you can’t go inside, showing them the outside of the building and playground can be a nice way to get them more comfortable with their new school. Walk by places in the neighborhood they know such as a park they play at, or the home of a friend. By doing this you’ll let them see how the school fits into their world.
3. Don’t forget about a good night’s sleep!
Between 9 and 10 hours of sleep is essential in order for children to be at their sharpest and best. We love summer because it’s full of late night ice cream outings and chasing fireflies in the park. However, if your kids need to be up by 6 a.m. make sure to factor in enough time for a leisurely dinner and bed prep so that they get plenty of sleep. Lights should go off no later than 8pm!
4. An organization chart makes mornings fun!
These can be great for your morning routine, and help ensure that everyone is on task. Simple tasks to include might be brushing teeth, putting on shoes and making the bed. Anything to help give you adequate time to prepare lunches or other chores, will make for a smoother morning. This will also prepare your kids to take on the day. Nothing is worse than a rushed morning! Adding star stickers to the chart, as well as other rewards, is a great way to incentivize them.
5. Playing games as you walk or drive to school helps with the nerves
6. It’s the first day of school! Get there early.
For the first couple of weeks it’s great to arrive at school 15 or 20 minutes early. Give your children time to play outside, or walk around the school. A bit of exercise before your little ones go into class will help them be more relaxed when the day begins. And, your children will get to see the school open up around them. Watching other students and teachers arrive will make them feel more comfortable, and give them ownership of the space. Arriving minutes before the bell is never the answer! Facing a room full of new faces as you walk into a room can be scary.
7. Notes can go a long way
We know you'll miss your little ones during the day, and there's no doubt they'll miss you, too. Lunch notes are an easy way to remind them how much you love them! Insert a funny drawing, or just wish them a great day. You'll make them feel comfortable and happy while they're away from you.
8. Remember, school is only one part of the day!
After the bell rings, there are many ways for your kids to continue exploring their own love of learning. Activities ranging from theater, to science and art — and so much more — are all on Sawyer. Enrichment programs outside of the classroom will allow your little ones to explore their new interests! Some of our favorite activities are listed below: