Parents and kids have to find time to get ready in the morning, drop everyone off where they belong, manage homework and school projects, and get to bed on time. Whew! What a lot of work! Starting school is an exciting time for both parents and children. Kids may be anxious about making new friends and encountering new situations and routines. Parents may be wondering how school is going to fit into an already busy day. Developing sensible routines will help you and your child manage school and all that comes with it. Kids that are prepared are less anxious and fare far better than kids who aren't.
Make sure that your child's school routine begins the night before. Help her lay out her clothes and make sure that she understands when you need to leave the house and what she has to do to be ready. Help her put her homework and other school-related materials in her book bag and put the book bag in a designated place – by the door, hanging from a doorknob, or on her desk. If your child eats a packed lunch, get it ready the night before as well. Getting things ready the night before when there's time eliminates stress and a lot of running around the next morning.
Make sure your child's morning routine includes a good breakfast. Studies show that kids who eat breakfast are better prepared to learn. Make a chart or a list of what she needs to do to get ready to leave the house so she doesn't have to be reminded. Charts can make mornings fun and easy to manage.
After school routines are important too. Make sure that your child has ample homework time and that she has a quiet place to study. If an after school caretaker manages homework time, make sure that you go over it with your child too. This helps you stay connected, monitor her progress, and gives you quality time with your child.
A set bedtime is important for young, school-aged children. Kids need eight to ten hours of sleep to be prepared to learn the next day. Develop a sensible bedtime routine that helps your child prepare for sleep without arguing. School routines incorporate a lot of smaller routines into the day, but helping your child be successful in school means that a lot of the what she does has to take place at home. Although it may seem like more work at first, helping your child manage their time before and after school, helps them become responsible and independent.