Fostering Independence: Back-to-School Tips for Parents and Kids

Getting the kids back to school is an annual tradition. Summer vacations are over, and kids are in classes all day long again. While many families love having the kids around so much during the summer, it can be a relief to parents to have kids back in school during the day. Having said that, it can also come at the expense of school buses clogging up the roads again.

The transition is a big seasonal change, however, and making it can be complicated. Fortunately, there are a number of back-to-school hacks your family can use.

For starters, consider using a visual chart. Kids do best when they have routine and structure. If they’re under the age of 6, then they’re primarily visual and concrete learners. A routine chart can help them get used to a routine and handle a few responsibilities on their own.

Secondly, your entryway needs to be convenient for everyone. That includes your kids. They need to know when and how to hang up jackets or coats or even put them on. They can learn how to dress and about managing layers based on weather.

Your back-to-school work needs to start with about a month left in the summer if possible. Have your kids start learning how to dress on their own. Have them practice putting on various pieces of school clothing so they build up muscle memory.

If you want your kids to eat their lunch while at school, or even dinner at home for that matter, then include them in the family food process whenever you can. Small tasks in meal preparation and taking them with you to the grocery store makes it more likely that they’ll eat the food you serve them.

Finally, develop a ‘happy goodbye’ routine. Whether you wind up dropping them off at school or put them on a bus, you have to let them go at some point. A goodbye that’s full of happiness helps relieve their anxiety about going to school for the day. You can encourage them to be brave enough to face the day and all that might come with it before you see them again in the afternoon or evening later on in the day.

Originally published at https://jenniferpowers.me.

Jennifer Powers is a mother, philanthropist, avid poker player, & blogger. http://jenniferpowers.me