By Paula Bowlby, Associate Early Childhood Pastor
Woodland Hills Church
Each year, it seems as though summer just flies by. School supplies are out earlier and earlier. Whether you are sending your little one to preschool for the first time or you have a child entering high school, back to school is a busy and exciting time. Lists of items to purchase and the trying on of clothing to see what fits/what has been outgrown all adds up financially and can contribute to stress for all involved.
Let’s take a look at this from the child’s perspective. Imagine getting a new boss and new responsibilities in your job every September. Next, your team is switched up on you, too. You will get to work with a few of your former teammates, but you will get new ones, too. What are you thinking? What are you feeling? What would help ease your transition?
Now that you have your child’s perspective in mind, let’s switch hats again. You as a parent know your child. You are there for the good days and the bad. How can you aid your child in their transition? What are questions you can ask to make the transition as smooth as possible? How can you frame your expectations to best suit your child? Here are a few thoughts and questions:
- Be prepared– go to your open house, research the teacher, find out what friends will be with them in their class, get the proper supplies
- Before the school year starts, ask questions to determine how your child is coping. Some examples are: What are you the most excited about for school to start? What are you anxious about? If there was one special thing we could do before school starts, what would that be?
- Let your child know they are not alone– walk them to class the first day, send a note in their backpack or lunch box, send them a text letting them that you love them and are praying for them
- Establish traditions for the first day of school. Examples: special dinner, cookies, going for ice cream
- Expect tired, cranky and drained kids
- Ask questions about the day: who did you sit by? Who did you eat lunch with? Tell me a good part and bad part of the day
Back to school- a wonderful time of year with routine, activity and the crisp, cool air of fall on the horizon. Enjoy each stage, they grow up fast.
A $20 McDonald’s gift card- for a back to school treat
In the comment section, we would like to hear what you do in your family does to prepare for school, a tradition you have or how you are feeling about school on the horizon. For an additional entry, Tweet or share our article on Facebook and copy the link into the comment section. The winner will be chosen randomly. The contest ends August 25th!