Early alarms. Carpool traffic. Shopping lists. You know what time it is — back-to-school season.
The transition back to school can be equally exciting and nerve-racking for children and parents alike. Here are a few tips to help your child ace the start of a new school year.
Pro tip: Teens, college students, and parents — and, heck, just about everyone — can benefit from following these tips, too.
1. Establish a routine
The struggle of early mornings after the flexibility of a summertime schedule is real. The best way to adjust is by establishing a routine (read: make your mornings + evenings easier). Pro tip: Write down your family’s routine, after-school activities, and important reminders on a weekly calendar to get back into the swing of a schedule.
2. Get some zzz’s
Encourage healthy sleeping habits, like going to bed and waking up 15-30 minutes earlier leading up to the big day to help ease into those early school mornings. (This goes for the big kids, too.)
3. Prioritize mental health
From K-12 to college, kids of any age can have big feelings when it comes to going back to school. Help manage your child’s back-to-school stress by openly communicating with them, and learn the signs of when first-day jitters turn into more serious school-related anxiety.
4. Visit the doc
Sick days are sure to happen during the school year, but you can protect your kids from serious diseases or infections by scheduling a routine check-up and keeping them up to date on vaccinations.
5. Plan nutrition-packed lunches
A nutritionally-balanced and healthy lunch that hits a few different food groups — like carbs, fats, protein, and vegetables — will give your child the fuel they need to conquer the school day. For after-school, avoid grab-and-go items that are less nutritionally dense (looking at you Twinkies), and try making your own ready-made snack bags with healthier items.
Want more back-to-school advice? See more tips for a successful school year.
Pro tip: This article was featured in COLA Wellness, our monthly wellness newsletter created in partnership with Prisma Health. Subscribe to our newsletter to make sure you never miss an issue.