Your Back-to-School Guide
From school supplies to lunch ideas, here are tips to help you send your kids back to school.
As summer winds to a close, it's time to go back to school. No more lazy days of summer. Instead, you have to deal with buying school supplies, packing healthy lunches, helping with homework and finding after-school child care. Scared yet?
Don't worry! Here are A+ tips to help you manage the chaos.
Before school starts
- Save money on school supplies by doing your back-to-school shopping early, so you have time to find the best deals and avoid the crowds.
- Figure out what to do with your kids when school lets out. Explore your after-school child care options now, so you're not left scrambling at the last minute.
- Want to hire an after-school sitter? Start the process early - the best nannies and babysitters get snapped up early.
- Ensure your child has a great first day of school and an even better school year by getting organised and preparing early.
- Talk to kids about important issues they may face this year. Watch a few back-to-school movies together to kick start the conversation.
- Is your child starting a new school? Ease the transition by going on a tour of the building, scheduling playdates with new classmates and using this advice.
- Sign up for after-school extracurricular activities, if you haven't already. Find the right ones for your kids.
- Get arty with some back-to-school crafts. They'll get your kids in the school spirit and they make great gifts for teachers.
- Learn the common back-to-school problems that parents face - and how to solve them!
- Plan how your little ones will get to school and how they'll get home. Decide if they're ready to walk to school alone.
1 week before
- Contact your child's teachers this week to see if they have any advice before school starts.
- Consider purchasing a special back-to-school gift for your kids.
- Get kids on a regular schedule before school starts, going to bed early and waking up early. Have them fill out a nighttime routine checklist.
The day before
- Head to the store and stock your fridge and pantry with food to make these quick and healthy breakfast and lunch ideas.
- Squash any back-to-school worries that may be cropping up today by talking to your kids about how great school is.
- As you prepare your kids for school, get yourself ready too.
The first day of school
- Start the year off right by keeping your morning relaxed and organised.
- Encourage children to talk about their day when they get home from school.
- Help your kids release all of that post-school energy with these fun after-school games and activities.
- Prepare some simple after-school snacks so you can feed grumbling tummies.
After school starts
- Kids complaining about classes already? Encourage them to love school.
- Look out for signs that your child is being bullied (or bullying someone else). Ask your after-school sitter to be aware of these red flags too.
- Give kids a hand with homework, but don't overdo it -- many parents get too involved, which hurts kids in the long run. Read up on these other homework solutions.
- Ask the teacher how you can be involved with your child's classroom -- your participation will help your kids do better in school. Try these options for parents who have three hours a day, a week, a month or a year!
- Prepare for the first parent-teacher conference by creating a list of things you want to discuss.
Read Next: Cutting Out the Back-to-School Chaos
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