It is August, which for many children across the nation it means that school is just around the corner. While we as parents try to pack in as much end of the summer fun as possible. We also need to make sure that we are getting our kids and ourselves ready for school to start. Regardless of whether you excited about your little ones (no matter how old they are) heading back into their routine, or you are rather anxious over the first day, these tips are going to help make that first day easier for everyone.
Remember when it comes to children, big or small, they are able to adjust better when they have a schedule or routine to keep. For you the parent that means reinstituting the earlier bedtime. Depending on the age of your children you want to make sure that they are going to bed early enough that they are going to get the amount of sleep they need to make it through the school day. Each age group needs a certain amount of sleep.
|3- 6 years old||10-12 hours a day||Typically go to bed between 7 and 9 p.m. and wake up around 6 and 8 a.m., just as they did when they were younger. At 3, most children are still napping while at 5, most are not.|
|7-12 years old||10-11 hours a day (this can vary from 9 to 12 hours a day, with the average being 9 hours.)||When children reach these ages they are more involved in social, family and school activities. This means that bedtimes gradually become later. Most 12-years-olds go to bed at about 9 p.m. There is still a wide range of bedtimes, from 7:30 to 10 p.m.,|
|12 – 18 year olds||8 – 9 hours a day (social pressure can work against a teen getting the amount of sleep they truly need.)||Sleep needs remain just as vital to health and well-being for teenagers as when they were younger. It turns out that many teenagers actually need more sleep than in previous years.|
As difficult as it may be, getting them set the week before school starts with a regular bedtime and then getting them up in the morning just as you would for school.
Get school supplies early. While each school and each grade has their own list what it is they expect students to bring to school with them, there are basics that you can get ahead of time. My best advice, right now, is to go to Wal-Mart. I couldn't believe a 24 pack of crayons for 15 cents, Crayola markers for $1 and Crayola color pencils $1 and spiral notebooks for 5 cents and pocket folders for 5 cents! Even when they go on sale at the other stores they are still not as inexpensive as that. You can never have enough loose leaf notebook paper, pens, pencils, crayons, markers and color pencils.
You should also start looking at buying school clothes and lunch supplies. Right now is when most stores are running many unadvertised sales on clothing and lunch items. Plus going now offers you more of a selection then if you go the week before school starts.
Backpacks, this is a biggie. Most schools will not allow children to use backpacks that are on wheels. So when you are looking at backpacks keep in mind the amount of items your child is going to have to carry. If your child is only going to bring home papers at the end of the week, he or she really doesn't need the big bulky backpack. Conversely, if your child is going to be toting books back and forth on a daily basis (high school age) you want to get them a bag that is going to fit the books and be comfortable for them to use.
However, if school does start for you next week and you are stressing over getting your child prepared… take a deep breath. It typically only takes 3 days to get used to a new schedule. You can still get to the store and get the school supplies that are necessary to start. If you can't find every color you need for folders and notebooks, that is okay. The stores will restock. Then keep an eye open for sales through the school year so that you can stock up!
Now, have a cup of coffee, get out your sales ads and make a list. Put on those sneakers and get out there!
No part of this article may be copied or reproduced in any form without the express permission of More4Kids Inc © 2009 All Rights Reserved