Chaos Not Needed Returning to School - Kingwood
Published: 08/10/2012 12:00pm
Chaos Not Needed Returning to School
August is the month when our children return to school. Families are preparing to make the transition from long summer days filled with late nights, day trips and friends to early morning, classes, homework and extracurricular activities. Whether it is kindergarten or college, the back-to-school season seems to create chaos in most American homes.
The key to harmony instead of havoc is to be organized, organized and more organized! That is easier said than done, so I would like to share with you a few practical tips to make this time of year a little easier for you and your family.
Avoid the rush:
• Shop early! Local stores start putting out fall fashions in mid-summer.
• Support uniforms. They are great! School supplies are usually stocked year ‘round. Obtain a supply list from your child’s school and purchase a few items every time you shop. It’s easier on your budget too. Keep a few supplies like construction paper, glue, markers and poster board on hand for special projects. It will avoid those late-night, frustrating trips to the store.
• Make sure immunization and medical records are up to date, and don’t forget dentist and eye exams. To further save time, haircuts can be worked in around other appointments.
• Post a big calendar in the kitchen for extracurricular activities. Deadlines for sign-ups are often overlooked.
• Learn school start times and bus schedules. Arrange for car pool and pick-up and drop-off destinations and times.
Get back in the swing of things:
• To avoid classroom nodding, begin a regular bedtime routine at least two weeks prior to the first day of school. Success includes rising early and establishing an effective early-morning routine. Don’t forget breakfast! (Parents, that includes you, too.)
• Organize closets, dressers and bathrooms during the summer. Everything should have a place. Dressing and grooming will be a lot easier.
Prepare the night before:
• Pack lunches and backpacks the night before. If your child is struggling with something, don’t forget a little note of encouragement in their lunch box. It will make a sometimes unbearable situation (in your child’s mind) better and bring a smile to their day.
• Review the items in your children’s backpacks to make sure they’re not forgetting something. In the afternoon, retrieve notes from school. This will keep you informed and ensure you and your child will not miss out on anything.
• Tackle clothing selections and bathing at night, too. The less stress in the mornings, the better.
• Send the kids off in the mornings with a hug and a…I love you! You will both have a better day!
Stay in touch at home and school:
• Designate a time to discuss their day, and really listen.
• Help with homework.
• Attend extracurricular activities as often as possible. It reinforces the child’s choice of activities, and shows your support of what’s important to them.
• Seek out opportunities to help. When possible, volunteer.
• Teenagers are very mobile. If possible, provide them with a cell phone (great for emergencies – but NOT to be taken to school). You will feel more secure knowing you can contact them.
I know this sounds a little overwhelming to “first timers,” but with a few lists and a lot of determination, you can make the back-to-school season an enjoyable experience for you and your family. After a few years of experience, it all becomes old hat. Until then, exercise a little patience. The result will be BIG smiles the first day of school for you and your children.
Article by: Debbie Dodd
Debbie Dodd is the Senior Sales & Marketing Director for the Kosmin Media Group and also a freelance writer. She is the mother of three and a grandmother. She resides in Kingwood with her husband, Ronnie. She can be reached at Debbie@kingwood.com.
View all articles by Debbie Dodd »
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