Transformative Thursdays: A Parent’s Guide to Gearing Up for School

Summer fun is quickly coming to a close.  Many students are a couple weeks from going back to school!  The summer is ending and it’s time to gear up for a successful academic year.  This means getting back into the routine of studying, doing homework, taking lunch to school, and getting school supplies.  Parents can help their children make a smooth transition from summer fun to school focus by introducing good night time sleep habits a few days before school starts, shopping early to get necessary school supplies, encouraging children to do academic activities (reading, spelling, writing, math, etc.) the days leading up to the start of school, and ensuring their child’s room (study/homework space) is school-ready.

These tips sound easy and almost ridiculous but they will make a huge difference in your child’s transition during the first couple weeks.  Parents should also be familiar with their child’s school—teachers, policies, standards, expectations, etc.  A visit to the school and a meeting with the principal are always a good idea.

Make sure you talk to your child before school starts and set realistic goals.  What grades would they like to make and how will they accomplish that?  What activities would they like to be involved in?  How will they choose friends?  Have a discussion about dealing with peer pressure, maintaining good values/morals, following the rules, etc.  Again, these issues seem minor, but taking the extra step to communicate with your child in a loving and non-threatening environment is imperative.  Establish a “safe haven” at home where they feel comfortable talking to you about any and everything.

Take some time to help your child establish “school focus” so you and they will have the best year possible!

~Coletta Jones Patterson

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