Back to School
Three words we either love to hear or we are dreading the mere utterance of “BACK TO SCHOOL”. As much as Facebook posts by family and friends would love for me to believe this is the most joyous day of all for parents, my profession says this is also the saddest day of all for some parents. Instead of smiling faces of children all dressed up for the first day, all they can manage to post is a few sad face emojis and a cry for help. School is back in and summer is officially over.
End of Summer Freedom
You see we no longer have the care free nights of no homework or the activity free weekends that summer often brings. I actually feel a sigh of relief the last week of school from parents and children alike who are looking forward to the next three months “off”.
However, families who take off completely during the summer, face the challenges of summer lag. Here is an excerpt from our radio show on Summer Learning
“Let’s talk today about summer learning. I admit that even as a parent I sort of cringe when I think about preparing for summer learning. For me it is a research project all by itself. I look up online the Common Core standards, I look up Department of Education standards for the coming year and then I have to design lots of good work to help my children be ready for the new year.
It sounds like a lot of work and it is. But each fall when my kids return to school and they are strong academically, all my hard work was worth it. I believe in getting my children ready for the next year so that we have an easier school year. We often laugh together when my children see work that they did in the summer time. We are creating a love for learning that makes school learning easier….
Visit our Radio link page to listen to podcasts of our show Tackling Summer projects: http://www.parentingtips2go.com/radio.html
The first week of school for many children brings back anxiety and fear that they had long left behind in beach filled summer days. School anxiety continues to be on the rise in children as young as three years old.
“Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the U.S., affecting 40 million adults in the United States age 18 and older, or 18.1% of the population every year” (ADAA.org, 2017).
Here are some tips from the article Overcoming Shyness by Suzanne Koup-Larsen, to help children who are anxious returning to school.
Heading back to school can be an anxious time for shy kids. To help:
- Tour the building before school starts.
- Meet the teacher with your child if possible.
- Role play with younger kids so they get an idea of what to expect.
- Let kids know it’s normal to feel shy when going back to school.
Visit here for the full article and a few extra tips http://www.mymetrokids.com/september09/overcoming-shyness0909.html
Finally, yes homework returns. The daytime school part is great for parents but it is the homework we really dread. Here are some helpful homework tips from my book Powerful, Peaceful Parenting: Guiding Children, Changing Lives Chapter 7: Homework
- We first need to start with a routine and a schedule for homework. Make sure that your child knows when it is expected for homework to be completed.
- Make sure your child understands the work. Many parents will say that “they know it they just won’t do it
- Be present during homework time. Children value having parents present when they are trying to get through homework tasks.
- Don’t be over critical when correcting. Many children get frustrated with parents who correct their homework in a frustrated or disappointing tone.
- Let your child pick where they do homework. Some of my clients will complete homework at the kitchen table, some in the yard, and one in their closet. Who cares where it is done as long as it is done.
- Eliminate as many distractions as possible. Children will be distracted if distractions exist. We will say to children “focus and pay attention” yet we have the television on, grandma is talking on the phone to the neighbors, the dog is running around, etc. You get the point. We really do need quiet and calm during homework time in order to get it done.
- Utilize after school programs and study times. Encourage children who stay after school to complete their homework during their program which will help to eliminate the parental battle of getting it done. Help your teenagers use study hall and other free periods to get work done.
- Start homework early and on weekends. I find that even if school does not give homework children who complete reading or other worksheets daily have an easier time when they do receive homework. Even preschoolers can be taught that tracing their A is homework today.
Have children read 10-15 minutes each day including weekends to help make learning a part of their routine.
Available on Amazon today https://www.amazon.com/Powerful-Peaceful-Parenting-Children-Changing/dp/1939288789
Parents back to school is finally here. Be prepared and embrace the new year.
I encourage you to have a powerful, peaceful parenting experience with your child each and every day.
Until Next Session,
9/16 – Children’s Book Festival 2017. Location: 1221 Haddon Avenue, Camden, NJ Time: 12PM – 5PM *Event is FREE*
9/21 – Mantua Parenting Classes*Open to Parents in the Mantua Township District*
9/23 – Gloucester County Women’s Health SummitLocation: Gloucester County Institute of Technology. 1360 Tanyard Rd, Sewell, NJ 08080 Time: 8:00AM – 12:00PM *Event is FREE*
10/2 – Maine Collaborative & Proactive Solutions (CPS) Location – Portland, Maine. Holiday Inn By The Bay Portland 88 Spring Street, Portland, ME 04101 Time: 8:00AM – 4:15PM
10/21 – Family Fun Fest, Duffield’s Farm Market Location: Duffield’s Farm Market 280 Chapel Heights Road Washington Township, NJ 08080 Time: 9:00AM – 2:00PM *Event is FREE*