And before we know it the summer will be over and for many children the dreaded month of September will begin and they will be back to school – the carefree days of summer vacation now a distant memory!
Meanwhile for parents there is rush to prepare: sorting out uniforms, book lists and other school materials. These can be costly, but what often gets forgotten are the things that come, not with any cost, but parental time and involvement.
So, to help you and your children prepare for a successful school year, please see our top five steps for families to undertake together, no costs attached.
1. Meet the teachers
Make it a priority to meet your child’s new teachers and if possible, find ways that you can volunteer some of your time at his or her school. Attend parents and teacher association (PTA) meetings, open houses and orientations if you can; but also try to set up a few minutes to meet with the teachers before or after school. At the least send an introductory email or message; so that the teacher knows you are involved and that you care.
2. Try healthy eating
As best as possible plan healthy eating options for your child. Try to arrange lunches and snacks that are protein rich and balanced with fruits and vegetables and encourage your child to drink a lot of water by sending him or her to school with a large water cooler.
3. Establish routines
A few days before school begins set up bed time and wake up routines that might involve setting out the clothes for the next day, checking to make sure the school bag is packed and the lunches are ready to go.
4. Family calendar
Set up a family calendar and mark out all the important school dates and school times and after school activities.
5. Shared goals!
Finally, children and parents can each set mutual goals for the school year (for the parent this could be attending PTAs or helping with homework). If you choose to, try they setting up a reasonable rewards system jointly with your child. Write these goals down and post them in the house where your child, and you, can see and be inspired by them!