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A Back-to-School List for Parents: Five Tips to Prep

by Dr. Heather Wittenberg | August 6, 2013 | Early Education & Literacy | Kindergarten Readiness

Back to School List for ParentsBack-to-school is around the corner, but don’t be daunted by the transition from summer fun to school schedule. Children take their cues from their parents, so it’s key for US to get into the back-to-school mind-set first. Here are my pain-free prep tips for parents – our stressless adjustment will filter down to the kids, making it smoother for everyone.

Adjust your schedule. Ease back into the more strict school schedule by making the week before school starts a test-run week. Plan for the whole family to adopt more regular mealtimes, bedtimes and tidying-up routines.

Document your summer. Organize photos and mementos of summer adventures. Have everyone help, and display your project. Seeing summer fun all in one place is a concrete way of knowing that it’s time for the next phase.

Organize your home. Organizing the house helps to organize your mind! Get your surroundings into school mode to help you prepare. Reclaim school space by putting away sidewalk chalk and pool floaties, making room for lunch boxes, jackets and school papers. Have the kids help you set aside things they’ve outgrown, label bins and organize. Activities like this cue the whole family that it’s time to move into a new season.

Go shopping. Doctor’s orders! I love being able to use shopping as an excuse to boost psychological adjustment. Back-to-school shopping is a way to psychologically prepare. There’s nothing like buying school supplies or seeing your child fit into the next, larger clothing size to tell you that it’s transition time. Have the kids help you donate their outgrown clothes to those who need them, too.

Get haircuts. Shaggy summer hair is adorable, but fresh, official new haircuts (for Mom and Dad, too) signal it’s time for a fresh, official new schedule.

Here are more of my tips for getting ready for back-to-school.

Back-to-school parent prep helps make an easy transition for everyone. How do you plan to prepare for back-to school?