Many students across the country have been eager to return to school since the school year ended. For some, in-person training has already begun — although with extra precautions: in certain places, a class may be held outside, under a tent, while in others, Plexiglass partitions may be used to separate students' desks from their peers'. Other schools have postponed the start of the semester to properly equip their instructors and facilities for the return of pupils. In addition, some districts that began with online training are now considering switching to in-person instruction. Even as more schools prepare to commence in-person instruction, some parents are still afraid to send their children to school.
Around this time of year, you'll either hear groans and moans or excited cheers, depending on your child. It's almost time for students to return to school as summer vacation draws to a close. Here are some back-to-school transition strategies you can start doing to prepare, whether your children will be doing distance education or in-person education this school year.
Come Up With a Routine
Parents understand how difficult it is to get the kids out the door on time during the school year, but planning could save time in the morning rush. Assess what your family can do to save time over the weekend or at the very least the evening before. Consider establishing a morning routine with your kids. You may introduce using timers for each task they have to do preparing.
Create a List
Making a daily or weekly list of "to-dos" can be a way to prepare a routine. Use a dry erase board or dry erase boards on your child's mirror to draw out a check they can tick off that involves reminders like housework, homework, or basic activities to make it entertaining for your child. Writing down chores serves as a visual reminder of what needs to be accomplished. This gives a child a place to go back to when they're not sure what to do next, and it gives them the gratification of crossing something off their to-do list.
Parents must be explicit about their responsibilities. Setting limits around remote learning helps to reduce stress and lets you have more capacity to support your child. As a parent, your responsibility is to encourage and organize your children while they study remotely and support them in problem-solving. It is not your responsibility to educate your children.
Interact with Teachers
Reaching out to your child's educators through email before the commencement of the school year to identify yourself (and your child) and build collaboration is one method to start forming a connection. Some teachers may need to juggle both live and distant lecturing simultaneously, and some will need to balance different groups of children, so approach them with the knowledge that they'll have a lot to consider. Include details on how your child tackled distance learning this past spring, as well as their educational weaknesses and strengths, in an introductory email. You may also use this time to raise questions. Try to be patient and don't expect a reply right away. Teachers may wait until they are formally on the clock to begin looking at these communications. You may get a head start on the connection, which will help your child succeed once fall comes by reaching out to them now.
When it comes to back-to-school shopping, involve your kids in the decision-making, and it won't seem like such a bother. Set spending limitations for things and let them choose what they want to get, whether online or in person. Consider letting your children choose a new mask that they will like wearing to school. To keep things exciting, you could even amaze them with a fresh one a few weeks into the autumn semester. You may need to load up on outside classroom supplies such as raincoats and weatherproof pens and paper. You'll skip long queues at stores and tension at home in the weeks leading up to the start of school if you start early. Many schools provide a checklist of what your child will require. Now is the time to stock up so that you'll be ready to start on day one.
Build Healthy Sleep Routines
Do not put off doing this until the evening before the beginning of the school year. Rather, take some time to build a good sleep schedule gradually. Begin by adding 15 minutes to your nighttime ritual every night till you reach your desired bedtime. Small changes are much better to handle than large, abrupt changes.
Fight the Jitters
Relax your children's concerns by focusing on the pros, such as spending time with friends, getting to know classmates, and participating in their favorite activities. Try to get them prepared before school starts by establishing a healthy weeknight routine, giving them a nice breakfast every morning, and organizing before school starts.
Get Your Kids Organized
Keeping relevant materials structured is a typical difficulty for children of all ages, especially as they transition to virtual learning becomes more prevalent. This is especially crucial for children with ADHD, as their executive functioning issues may make managing many teachers, courses, and web pages challenging. Make a list of the numerous platforms your children will need to visit to learn about forthcoming meetings and tasks before school starts to provide some framework for them. It's easy to lose track of what you need to complete when you don't see your educators in person, so noting where their assignments are published will help them succeed.
These aspects may appear unimportant compared to what your child learns at school, but they are an essential component. At a bare minimum, your child will require the following items to attend class and learn. Assist children in getting off to a good start by fostering an environment that facilitates learning ensures they are familiar with utilizing crucial tools before lessons begin.
- Work together to create a peaceful workspace and explore what feels suitable for your child. This could mean a separate room, dedicating a specific location of a communal space, incorporating the use of a sit-stand workstation and ergonomic chair, or investing in a pair of noise-canceling headphones to help your child focus. If your children share a room, you can let them customize their environment by designing a presentation board or cardboard box, or even a curtain to function as a privacy screen.
- Ascertain that you have a stable internet connection.
- Appoint areas for them to keep their writing equipment, books, pamphlets, and other things.
- Spend some time together exploring any websites or tools that the school uses so that your child feels confident accessing technology on their own.
- Verify sure your child's device is operational and that they understand how to use it.
- Make a printed list of critical passwords that kids need to know and store them somewhere safe and available.
- Prepare a daily packing list: On frantic mornings before school, you wouldn't want to forget the mask, hand sanitizer, potentially, a spare, and a water bottle.
Ease Anxieties About Unusual Setups
This year, your child may find it tough to recognize their classmates and teachers, thanks to distance and a hybrid learning approach. Consider how you can assist your child make a connection with them, and don't be afraid to ask the instructor what you can do together to strengthen that tie. Children with social anxiety, for example, regularly visit their schools before the school year starts to meet their educators and view their classrooms. Parents can inquire about similar possibilities for their children to see an actual, living human before the first day of school, either via video chat or a socially distanced face-to-face contact.
By reviewing the school's website, speaking with instructors, and attending virtual meetings in the district, you can stay up to date on its regulations, such as what follows if a student tests positive for the coronavirus, and describe what they may expect calmly. If the kids are concerned about the changes, tell them that by following appropriate public health practices, they can support their classmates, family, and instructors to stay safe.
Create an After-School Routine
Because most working parents don't come home until after school, it's critical to plan where your children would go and who will be at home throughout the afternoon once school is over. Have an older sibling pick up your younger children after school, or check with the school to see if any after-school options are open. When just home, try taking a minute's silence, meditation, or even using a relaxing jar to help them relax and refocus. Then stay on track by assisting with homework or assisting your children in preparing a healthy dinner. Family supper allows you to spend quality time with the children, talking about their day and bringing up any problems or concerns they may have, such as bullying.
Most schools would have an orientation day for parents and students to meet their critical players and familiarize themselves with the institution and their classrooms. Start making plans to accompany your children to the orientation and greet their instructors and personnel. Your children will be more at ease, and you will get the opportunity to speak with school professionals.
With a bit of forethought, you can feed your children the assurance that you'll face these new obstacles together, and you'll have built-in time for them to speak to you with any worries as the school year progresses.