And just like that, it’s back!
The school clothes, backpacks, homework, team practices, and more all signal that summer has come to a close and a new school year is upon us.
For all of us parents, that means another shot at making the most out of this busy but wonderful season.
A great school year starts at home, so it’s important to make sure you’re taking the steps to help your kiddos have the best year ever! Here are some tips on how to get started:
1.Establish Some Household Routines
Get your whole household on a routine to keep yourself and your kids on track throughout the school year. Everyone may not wake up at the same time, but hitting key schedule points like meals, homework/study times, and rest times throughout the day, you can make sure your kids have some consistency, no matter how hectic the rest of their schedules may be.
Routines provide consistency and predictability for kids, which is important as they tackle the unknown challenges of new lessons, homework, and friends, all school year.
2. Keep Some Space Between You and Their Homework
No matter how old your kids are, establishing clear boundaries with their schoolwork can help keep the peace at home.
As parents, it can be tough to see your kids struggle with a certain homework assignment or project. I’ve been there, myself! But we need to set clear boundaries, such as:
- Only jumping in when they ask you for help, or
- Making sure they have used all of their available resources before coming to you.
These can save you from too many late nights, crowded around a project that’s equal parts your work and theirs.
Clear boundaries like this can also help your kids establish healthy time management skills and break down some of the fear surrounding asking for help.
3. Don’t Forget the Fun Stuff!
We all get stuck in ruts throughout the school year, where the monotony of a routine makes you forget to add some fun throughout the week. With school, homework, extracurriculars, and all of the other obligations in between, it can be hard to remember to take a breather and enjoy some family time.
Try to utilize not only your weekends but little moments throughout the week. Set up weekly traditions like “Game Night” or pick a TV show everyone enjoys and set aside the time to enjoy some relaxing time together as a family. Family meals can also be a reassuring and fun tradition, even if you can’t make it work every single day.
This can make a huge difference in not only your relationship with your kids but their own relationships with work/life balance down the road.
4. Respect Your Free Time
Remember, your free time does not equate to your availability, and the same goes for your kids! Overbooking yourself and your family can lead to burnout for all parties involved.
Make sure your kids have downtime, whether it’s by their choice or yours. It can sound good to have a rehearsal or meeting to attend every single day after school, but it’s no way to ensure that your kids have time to enjoy being young.
5. Positivity is Key
Your kids will feed off of your energy going into this new school year. If you’re confident they’ll have a great year ahead of them and reach their full potential for the year, then that’s exactly how they’ll feel!
Every kid is different and every school year comes with its challenges, but if you let your children know you believe in them, they’ll believe in themselves and do the best they can. And that’s a foundation that’s destined to bring a successful year into fruition.