Though we\’re in the midst of another heat wave, parents across the province are happily bidding adieu to summer and waving a warm hello to their favourite time of year – back to school! But as much as you may have been looking forward to getting your children back on their educational journey, are you really ready to get back into the swing of things?
Put on a brave face, and try these few helpful tips that should help eliminate fights and help you and your kids start the school year off on the right foot.
The first day of school is here. Ideally you would have started your back to school prep at least a week ago, but for those of you more likely to have been lumped in with the lazy-bones than the overachievers can still get into healthy habits this late in the game. Technically, it takes 21 days to develop a habit, but with children 14 days is sufficient – the first few weeks will be a bit rocky but at least you\’ll sail through the rest of the year.
Early To Bed, Early To Rise
First things first, focus on their sleep. According to the National Sleep Foundation, 60% of children under 18 complain about being tired during the day. Rule of thumb: teenagers (14-17) need 8 to 10 hours, school aged children (6-13) need 9 to 11 hours, and preschool aged children (3-5) need 10 to 13 hours of sleep each day. Slowly ease them into a better bedtime so you can get them up bright and early to be ready for the busy day ahead.
Get To Prepping
Don\’t wait until the morning to get your stuff together – packing bags and lunches, laying out clothes, and checking homework before you hit the hay will save you precious minutes in the morning that you can spend connecting with your family instead of stressing out. Children learn through osmosis, and hopefully you’re planning and organizational skills, even if they don\’t come naturally, will trickle down into their daily routines as well.
Kids crave structure, and love being rewarded for a job well done. Create a morning routine chart that includes everything they need to get done, like brushing their teeth, combing their hair, washing their face, collecting their bags, getting out the door on time, and whatever else they may need to do or grab for that particular day. Once you\’ve agreed to a morning routine, go through each step with them and discuss how important they are to the morning routine.
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, don\’t let your little kiddos go to school without fuelling up their busy bodies and growing minds! Pinterest and other like sites share hundreds of fantastic ideas for make-ahead treats, smoothies and other ingenious recipes to help you save time in the morning. Alternatively, if you\’re busy getting others ready, you can keep have healthy options for breakfast within reach of little hands – most children love getting to “do it themselves,” why not let them stretch their wings and help make your morning a little easier in the process?