Maybe you’ve been counting down the days or you’ve blinked and you can’t believe it’s over already. After weeks off on their summer break, our children are now heading back to school to start the autumn term. It’s the beginning of a new academic year, bringing with it a sense of anticipation, excitement and nerves. Amongst the name labels, new shoes, oversized uniforms and carefully chosen stationary, there is a lot for parents and children to consider as they get themselves prepared.
If your child is starting school for the first time, moving up to a new school, or going into the next class, here are some simple steps to make the transition as easy and stress free as possible:
- Bring back good bedtime habits
Weeks of late nights and lie ins (if you’re lucky!) may have put your children’s bedtime routine out the window. But the last thing you want to do is send your child back to school tired and irritable. In the week leading up to the new term, introduce early nights and set a good sleep routine to help make getting out the door on the first morning less of a shock to the system.
- Breakfast is the most important meal of the day
Start their day with a decent meal – a low sugar cereal like Weetabix or porridge is ideal – and they will be far more likely to concentrate better and last through until lunch. Send them off with nutritional snacks too to give them a much-needed energy boost. They don’t need to be expensive or take much prep – breadsticks, carrot sticks and hummus, or a simple apple and banana will do the trick.
- Introduce a screen time schedule
Studies show that sleep can be disrupted by staring at a screen before bed, especially in children, so try to limit their screen time where you can, especially in the hour or so leading to bedtime. Agree on a screen time schedule together to help avoid any arguments.
- Set up a homework station
Like it or loathe it, chances are your child will be set homework throughout the term. Try and make it as easy as possible by designating a time and space where they can do it each day. Perhaps it can be in their room or at the kitchen table while you’re preparing dinner.
- Encourage independence
Noël Janis-Norton, an expert in children’s learning and behaviour, encourages parents to let their children be more independent and learn to entertain themselves. “Let them clear up after themselves and do as much for themselves – i.e. getting dressed and out the door – as they can. This is the basis for them working well independently at school and developing resilience, problem-solving skills and confidence – things you do want them taking into the classroom,” Janis-Norton said.
Perhaps you’re just about to start thinking about applying for schools for the next academic year and wondering if there’s still time to relocate. Well we’ve got some great developments coming to a location near you, all of which are in the catchment area for well-reputed primary and high schools. And with our purchasing assistance schemes to help make your move as smooth and straight forward as possible, you could be in your new home much sooner than you think.
To find out more about the new homes coming to an area near you, head to our ‘Find a home’ page or contact us for more information.