Back-to-school preparation eases kids' transition

Back-to-school preparation eases kids' transition

Parents can find deals on back-to-school supplies. (Source:Steven Depolo/Flickr Creative Commons) Parents can find deals on back-to-school supplies. (Source:Steven Depolo/Flickr Creative Commons)
Parents can prepare Pre-K students with colorful crayons. (Source: Jonathon Garcia/Flickr Creative Commons) Parents can prepare Pre-K students with colorful crayons. (Source: Jonathon Garcia/Flickr Creative Commons)
School supply drives are held every year around the country. (Source: North Charleston/Flickr Creative Commons) School supply drives are held every year around the country. (Source: North Charleston/Flickr Creative Commons)

(RNN) - Children who are starting school for the first time or moving to a new school have to adjust to a new teacher, new academic demands and a possible change in social circles. Parents can help make the transition easier with a little preparation.

A great way to start preparing your child is to take them to one of the back-to-school symposiums that are held at the end of July and the beginning of August every year.

Organizations and the schools themselves let kids know what to expect, and help uplift youth and teach life values.

Family and Children’s Educational Services, Inc. (FACES) in Valley, AL, sponsored a youth symposium in August. Founders Walter Scott and Dr. Tara Scott hosted the event.

“This symposium gives youth an opportunity to voice prevalent concerns in their everyday life. The topics we discussed were bullying, academic achievement, identity and life after graduation,” Dr. Tara Scott said.

“Not only did we have speakers to encourage the youth. We provided free school supplies, bagged lunches and fun entertainment,” Walter Scott said.

Informative events will help students focus on making good decisions in school, and one parent said it's a great help.

“I have attended events to help ensure my twins are prepared for what they could encounter during the school year,” Kandis Strickland said.

Parents should also make sure their child is familiar with the school by taking a couple of tours. It’s good to visit the new teacher’s classroom, so that your child can have a bonding experience and feel more comfortable for that big first day.

Even if your child isn’t new to the school, it’s good to find out and discuss what the new teacher expects her students to learn this year. A parent-teacher meeting ahead of the first day of class is also an opportunity to get worksheets and reading material to help your child advance early.

Children are not only nervous about meeting their teacher and making good grades, they are also anxious about making new friends. If your child isn’t a social butterfly with a big personality, you may want help them connect with children in the neighborhood, who will be attending the same school. 

Another great way to help your child be a well-rounded student is to sign them up for activities that would get them used to interacting with other children. Sports, cheer-leading, pageants, music classes, dance and any other activities offered for Pre-K, elementary and high school students.

It’s also a good idea to check out other performing arts activities outside of school for your child to get involved in such as gymnastics, acting classes for plays and classes to learn how to play various musical instruments. This will help your child discover themselves and what activities they enjoy the most. It’s important to introduce your child to their creative side, and this will keep them productive during the school year.

Studies show that students who participate in activities and the arts while in grade school, and are more likely to succeed in the classroom. A parent should make sure their child continues to learn throughout the day.

If your child is in preschool and isn’t used to being away from you for long periods of time, ease them into classes by spending the first hour or two with them for a few days. Once they see the other children having fun and being ‘big kids,’ your child will be quick to send you on your way.

If your child’s separation anxiety becomes difficult to handle, try giving them something to hold onto such as a family photo or a small toy.

Prepare your child for school by getting them excited about what they will be doing at school. Tell them about the playground, recess, art, P.E. (physical education), sports, writing, reading and homework.

Yes, tell your child how much fun they will have doing homework. If you make the learning process fun, your child will love striving for all As. Also, talking about how their day at school went and what happens during the day will let them know you’re interested in their lives no matter how old they are.

Research studies show parents who communicate and teach their children in a healthy manner are less likely to have children who become violent or abuse drugs when they become teens and young adults.

Build a parent-child relationship that will make them feel comfortable to come to you for anything, even when they are in trouble. Your child would likely notify you if they’re being bullied by a student or teacher, instead of keeping it a secret.

Creating a comfortable home and learning environment is important for preparing your child, as well. When the home life is turbulent, your child will carry that into the classroom and have a poor academic performance. Your child may even cope with these issues by acting out in class and becoming the class clown. Don’t just punish your child, pay attention to why they are misbehaving.

Young children should also get from 9 1/2 to 11 hours of sleep a night. Get your child back in the habit of going to bed around 7 p.m. or 8 p.m. so they can wake up in time to get dressed and eat breakfast. Never send your child to school hungry. There are many quick and easy meals you can fix on the go. A child who eats a healthy breakfast will stay alert and engaged in the classroom.

Help your child with their homework as soon as they get home, whether it’s coloring, practicing writing letters, word problems or multiplication and division. If you don’t feel comfortable helping your child because their homework is getting too advanced for you, contact someone who can help. Another family member or a tutor can help your child get their homework done.

If you’re purchasing all of your child’s school supplies, let your child help pick out their lunch box, notebooks, book bag and other supplies they want. This will make them more excited about starting school and showing their friends the cool things they got.

You also need to be on time taking and picking your child up from school if they won’t be riding the bus. You don’t want to make your child feel like you forgot about them, especially on the first day.

After your child completes their first few weeks of school, relax knowing you have prepared your child for a fun and successful school year.

“Always continue to encourage your child to do his or her “absolute best,” Alabama middle school teacher Tamalita Dunn-Autry said.

Copyright 2015 Raycom News Network. All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2018 Raycom Media. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.