Your Back-to-School Guide for the 2017-2018 School Year

Now is the time to prepare for back to school 2017-2018. Parents are gathering and organizing school supplies, lunch ideas, registration details and after school childcare. Kids are considering what they will need for after school extracurricular activities. Luckily, there are a lot of school shopping tips and back to school guides posted online to help you find the best purchases, but there is more to back to school preparation than finding the hottest backpack.

Establishing Daily Routines for School

Preparing for the 2017-2018 school year means adapting to a new routine. There will be no more late bedtimes and lazy mornings. Parents should determine a set bedtime that allows kids enough sleep to wake up well-rested every morning. Practice your weekday routine a few times before the 2017-2018 school year begins. Layout clothes, come up with lunch ideas, pack school supplies, etc. the night before. Prepare what you can in advance to make mornings less hectic.

Overcoming the Back to School Transition 

  • Focus on the positives. Make returning to school something your child will look forward to; it is not an easy transition for all kids.
  • Allow your child to pick out school supplies and clothing that he or she likes, and will be excited to show off.
  • Try to encourage your child by reminding them about friends they haven’t seen, or how they can tell their favorite teacher or bus driver about their fun summer activities.
  • Children are more at ease when they know what to expect. Try to introduce your child to at least one new classmate before school starts. Contact your school to find a possible connection. This can make the transition less scary.
  • Visit the school with your child and have he or she meet the new teacher. Ask the teacher for a tour of the classroom and the lowdown of a typical school day.
  • Ask if the school offers a mentor or buddy system.

Overcoming Kid Worries

  • Some children experience severe anxiety when starting school for the first time. This may be the first time in a kid’s life that he or she is faced with any real pressures.
  • Don’t discount your child’s worries, but talk to your kid about school concerns and work to help them solve each issue.
  • Don’t add to their anxiety with unnecessary demands. Let kids know that no one is great at everything. Praise your child for good efforts.

Keep in mind that some kids have problems in school that can’t be corrected easily. At times there are underlying health conditions. If your child’s anxiety does not go away after a few weeks or becomes more severe, contact your family physician.