Top Tips for getting ready for the new school year.

Why do the holidays fly by so fast?! It’s hard to believe that a new school year is beginning again already. While parents begin to focus on (or panic about!) getting organised, many kids are a little apprehensive about starting school or returning to school. But there’s a lot you can do to ease their minds and to help them get prepared for the new school year. Here are eight of our favourite tips…

1. Early to bed, early to rise: It’s important to get back into a school sleep schedule, but it won’t happen overnight! Everyone enjoys the more relaxed evenings and the morning sleep-ins that we treat ourselves to while on holiday, but it’s a really good idea to get your child into the habit of going to bed earlier a couple of weeks before school starts. Gentle winding-down activities such as bath time and - of course - reading before bed, can help kids to relax.

2. Re-establish a routine: Establishing a consistent routine is also really important. Talk the routine through with your child. In the evening, this could include doing homework, playtime, brushing their teeth, having a bath, packing their bag for the next day, and reading either independently or together.

3. Encourage independence: Is your child old enough for chores like emptying the dishwasher or making lunches? Regular, age-appropriate tasks will help your child gain independence and confidence. They will also help prepare them for the routines and responsibilities that they take on in the classroom. Furthermore, children who play an active role in preparing for the new school year, such as choosing and organising school supplies – are more likely to get excited about going back to school. 

4. Talk about safety: The return to school offers an opportunity to review outdoor safety rules – things like looking both ways before crossing the street, familiarising themselves with crosswalk rules, and being cautious in talking to strangers.

5. Establish some healthy habits: Involve your children in choosing and preparing healthy lunches and snacks. Maybe they will also enjoy shopping for them at the supermarket. It’s a great idea to get them used to helping pack their snack box and fill their water bottle independently too. You could also talk about how they could make their school snacks and supplies more sustainable and eco-friendly too. 

6. Limit the screen time: Back to school is also the perfect opportunity to re-establish screen time limits. It’s a great idea to set a good example and have the whole family “unplug” in the evenings before bedtime. 

7. Talk about any first-week worries: Reassure your child that being nervous is natural – even for the teachers. Letting them express their fears helps your child cope with these feelings. Perhaps you can share stories of your own first-day jitters when you were a child! You can also teach them to breathe deeply and slowly to calm any nerves.

8. Celebrate the new school year: If you celebrate the first day of school together, your kids will see the return to school as a transition that they can really enjoy. Try a family back-to-school party the day before school starts, or baking a special cake, their favourite meal, or even an educational gift. A new book or one of our Back To School Book Boxes could be just the ticket! And don’t forget to take a photo on the front step on their first day! 

Back to school: get ready for the new school year.
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