Beyond The Supply List - How To Prepare Your Child For A Successful Back-To-School-Experience

Pencils, paper, backpack, markers – what more do children need for a successful start to school? Hint: it can’t be purchased at the store. More than anything, children need predictability, routines, and support during times of transition. Changing schools, having a new teacher, dealing with learning challenges, making friends, or even slight changes in routine can trigger anxiety for students of all ages.

School-related anxiety may be an underlying cause for many attendance issues and behaviors which get in the way of academic success.

Here are some tips for creating a smooth transition back to school for your child:

During the Summer

  • • Call the school office to request a time for your child to find and set up their locker and walk through their class schedule before the first day.
  • • Attend all orientation and scheduled kick-off events – with your child when possible
  • • Complete paperwork and enrollment forms and mail/drop off in advance
  • • Start the back-to-school routine a week in advance – help them get to bed on time, lay out clothes the night before, set an alarm clock, and have breakfast before starting the day
  • • Point out the bus stop and the school any time you pass it (or on a map if needed)

The Night Before the First Day

  • • Together, pack your child’s backpack and/or lunch so they're ready to go
  • • Talk with them about what they’re excited about and what they’re nervous about; let them know how important their happiness and hard work in school are to you
  • • Lay out school clothes before bedtime
  • • Get them to bed at a consistent time every evening and set their alarm clock

It's Here - The 1st Day! Reminders You Can Share With Your Child

  • • Wake up on time
  • • Eat a healthy breakfast
  • • Remember your backpack and lunch or lunch money
  • • Smile and have a positive attitude
  • • Ask for help if you need it
  • • Remember: everyone gets a little nervous about the 1st day of school, even teachers!