Change is always hard, including the summer-to-school transition. As kids grow up, their needs change, and it can be hard to keep up as a parent. The following seven tips are fantastic ways to solve common back-to-school problems and stresses!
Make a Homework Spot
Homework is assigned to young kids typically because it builds skills around organization and responsibility. Thus, give them an area to practice those skills.
Choose a place in the house you spend a lot of time in, and make a spot for the kids to do their homework, color, or read. Having the kids work on their assignments while being close enough to watch them is the ideal scenario for themandyou to be productive.
From clothes to pencils, back-to-school shopping gets expensive. And, it is easy to get swept up in advertisements expressing what is needed for kids to fit in and excel this school year. Trends are constantly changing, and kids are no exception to this.
Start by going through your kids’ everyday clothes and accessories, and make two piles separating what stays and what goes. Once there is a list of everything needed, plan out how much money you are willing to spend. Figure out what are needs vs. wants– and put the money towards the needs first.
In other words, the kids need lunch boxes before they need ten pairs of sneakers. But, if all the essentials are taken care of, use that extra money to get the light-up sneaks the kids have been wanting. It is all about prioritizing!
Drop-Off and Pick-Up
Most schools have more than one option for how kids get to and from school. Whether it be a bus or waiting in line at three o’clock to get the kids, there must always be a plan!
Before the school day starts, double-check that the kids know where they are going. Otherwise, time will be wasted, and stressful confusion will arise as they try to find you. Busy days lead to forgetfulness, so consider writing a note of the plan and putting it in their backpack just in case!
What to do While the Kids are at School
The second the kids get home, you will not have the time to finish chores or work. The kids will want to tell you about what happened on the playground during recess and you will want to spend intentional time with them.
We understand that parents can be put under a lot of stress with making ends meet, keeping the kids happy and healthy, and still having time for themselves to breathe. So, while the kids are at school, try to get all the possible work done!
There may be overlap between work and time with the kids, but getting even a couple of chores done is exponentially better and more productive for you and the kids. You’ll also feel better about yourself knowing that there is less stuff to do after the kids go to bed. Doesn’t eight hours of shut-eye sound nice?
Remember to get all the food groups in when packing lunch for the kids. This is difficult sometimes, especially on busy mornings when everyone is running late. Food prepping is a great way to avoid morning stress and save time!
During the weekend, decide what to buy for the kids’ lunches and get enough for the whole week. And then, pack up their lunches the night before every day, pop them in the fridge, and simply grab them in the morning.
You’ll not only save time, but you’ll save money by food prepping. You won’t have to go back to the store that week, and you won’t be buying random food that may go bad if it’s not eaten. Make a plan to buy only what you need, and your bank account will thank you!
Tell the Kids How to Get Help
Unfortunately, kids fall on the playground daily, get bullied, or have hard days now and then. And the most challenging part for a parent is not being able to be there to help them.
Sit down with your kids and tell them where to go if they need help. Introduce yourself and your kid to the teacher on the first day to build a good comfort level. Walk them around the school and show them where the nurse’s office is. Asking for help is never wrong and often takes wise action steps. Sometimes kids just need a little push to get there!
Parents Can Ask For Help Too
After spending the summer with the kids, it only makes sense for parents to be overwhelmed with saying goodbye to them for a whole day. Parents, this is normal, and you are not alone in that feeling!
The best way to ease your mind is to reach out to others. If you are worried about something at the school, schedule a parent-teacher conference to discuss the matter. If you are sad about not being around your kids, ask other parents to get coffee and talk through it all.
There are always resources to utilize, and it is never a bad idea to reach out for help!