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Back to School Tips

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‘Tis the season for kids to go back to school (or go for the first time!) It is a time for exciting changes that can come with a little anxiety. Here are some tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics to help ease the transition and set up little ones for success:

  • Discuss the schedule and expectations beforehand
    • Start talking about what your child can expect on their first day and beyond well in advance
      • Allow time to answer any questions they may have to ease anxiety
        • Make sure they know about any before or after school activities they may be enrolled in
      • Talk about how you expect them to behave and what to do when they have strong feelings while at school
      • Be positive! Reassure them that school is fun!
  • Be prepared
    • Try to take care of medical/dental/vision appointments prior to the 1st day of school
      • This allows for time to make any adjustments that may be necessary prior to starting a school routine
    • Develop a routine early
      • Allow several days prior to school starting to adjust your child’s schedule for school
        • Preschool: find out when nap/quiet time, lunchtime, etc. are and try to mirror this schedule at home
        • TK/Kindergarten: visit your school’s website and try to mirror their schedule the week before
          • Make sure your child has a few days to adjust their sleep schedule (if needed) to be ready to go for school
  • Healthy eating at school
    • Healthy meals help fuel your little one’s body and brain and can help them stay focused for learning
      • Breakfast:
        • A healthy breakfast is SO important! Studies show that children who eat a nutritious breakfast function better.
      • Snacks & lunch:
        • Be sure to pack healthy options and avoid sugary snacks
  • Stay involved
    • Check in with your child about school often
      • Ask daily how their day was and what they learned
      • Ask about classmates, teachers, and friends
    • Check in with the teacher(s)
      • Keep in contact with your child’s teacher(s) throughout the year
        • Attend parent-teacher conferences, back to school nights, etc whenever possible
        • Read newsletters and bulletins from the school and teacher(s)

Back to school is an important and exciting time for children and there are things parents can do to help make the transition as smooth as possible. As always, if you have questions or concerns about back to school preparedness, consult your child’s pediatrician or school district. Here is a helpful link from the American Academy of Pediatrics:

https://www.healthychildren.org/English/ages-stages/gradeschool/school/Pages/Back-to-School-Tips.aspx

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