Start a family calendar in a common area where all family members can write down their activities...
By Marian Wilde
As the lazy days of summer slip away, it will soon be time to put away the beach chairs and corner lemonade stands and prepare your kindergartner for school. Here are some tips for making the transition easier.
Ease into the school-year schedule. Getting into a school routine can be a challenge for everyone in the family. To make adjusting to the new routine easier, start early.
Reading books together about the first days of school is a good way to start conversations about the excitement and fears. To get you started, here are some suggestions for your kindergartner:
Take advantage of the slower pace during your time away from school to set up for the busy school year ahead.
It's always a great idea to buy what you know you'll need early, if you can. Go through your child's wardrobe and weed out everything she's outgrown. By reducing the clutter, you will be able to get her dressed quickly and easily.
Keep in mind school dress codes while shopping. Some schools prohibit short skirts and tank tops for girls and "sagging" (baggy trousers that hang low) for boys. Schools may also have rules regarding printed words or phrases on clothes.
Although it's difficult to predict what different teachers will require, you can get ahead of the game by buying certain staples. Here's a general list of items that elementary school students usually need:
Get creative with easy, healthy ideas for school day meals. If you plan and gather what you need on the weekends, you'll make life a lot less stressful and meals more nutritious during the week.
If you will be packing a lunch from home, be sure to have a sturdy lunch box or a supply of paper bags on hand. Here are some quick and creative ideas for making school lunches healthy and fun:
Plan dinners for the week ahead and shop on the weekends to avoid last-minute trips to the grocery store.
To make the best use of your time and keep life from being harried, think about priorities for family members and then schedule them into the week.
Determine how much time you can give to the school each month as a volunteer and an involved parent: in the classroom, on field trips, for fundraising events, and on school-wide committees.
Start a family calendar in a common area where each family member can have their activities written down.
Everyone will feel better if transportation to and from school is addressed well before the start of the school year, particularly if your child is taking the bus.
Most after-school care arrangements must be made months ahead, frequently in the winter or spring before your child starts school. As the school year approaches, however, it's a good idea to confirm your plans.
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