5 Ways to Get Ready For Back To School Right Now
Whether the kids will continue distance learning or return to in-person learning this coming school year, here are five back-to-school transition tips that can help you get ready for the new school year, right now.
This was an unprecedented school year for families with school-aged children. I don’t think any of us ever expected to have our children learning from home. Once it was safe to return to school, many families opted to continue learning from home, some returned to in-person learning only to go back to remote learning again, and a few families were able to send their kids back to in-person school without interruption.
Now, as this weird school year finally comes to an end, it’s hard not to worry about what lies ahead. As a parent, you might already be wondering how you can start preparing for the transition back to school right now. Planning ahead can help calm your worries and ensure the kids feel more confident when it’s time to go back to school this fall.
How to get ready for back-to-school right now
Open up the dialogue now
Don’t wait until the end of the summer break to start talking about going back to school. Parenting during the pandemic has been hard! Start those back–to–school conversations now. Talk with your kids about COVID-19, ask what they know and how they feel about it and discuss how this upcoming school year might be impacted by it. Share what you know about the options your school is offering or considering for the upcoming Fall schedule. Encourage your child to talk about their emotions, concerns and feelings.
Are they excited about seeing friends again? Worried about getting sick? Let them share their thoughts and feelings, both positive and negative, and give them time to ask questions, too! Listen to your child’s concerns and reassure them that adults (parents, teachers, and school administrators, etc.) are trying to do what’s best, but also remind them that everyone may still need to remain flexible as situations can still change. By having these conversations now, kids will be better equipped when it’s time to transition back to school. There are plenty of resources to help you talk to kids about Coronavirus!
Practice proper mask wearing now
No matter how your child returns to learning this Fall, an adjustment period should be expected. If returning to school in-person, it’s quite possible that masks will still be required when kids return to school. Instead of a harsh change — like going from not wearing a mask at all during the summer at home, to now having to wear one for 8 hours a day at school — you can encourage your child to wear a mask and start practicing safe behaviors ahead of time.
Even your youngest child can be gradually taught to wear a mask properly. You can start practicing now so that your child will become more comfortable and have an easier time transitioning back to school in-person. By gradually increasing the amount of time your child practices proper mask wearing, your child will begin to feel more comfortable when it’s time to return to school with peers.
Keep learning through the entire summer
Does your child have schoolwork to complete over the Summer? Make sure your kids are reading daily and completing any Summer assignments or special projects. Here are 4 tips to creating the perfect children’s reading corner!
During the Summer months, kids can fall back the equivalent of two entire school months (or more, when you factor in this extended pandemic). Still, our kids have made so much progress this school year (despite distance learning). They’ve worked so hard! And you’ve worked so hard! So let’s not let the summer slide happen. Even if our focus now becomes Summer fun, there are still so many ways to keep our kids learning. On my blog, I wrote about three fun and easy ways to prevent the summer slide. I encourage you to join my Summer Reading Challenge for Kids and download my FREE printables here. Read on!
Stock up on school supplies now
Whether you homeschool or send your child off school, there’s a good chance they’ll need to stock up on some school supplies before you head back to school. It’s common for schools to provide a back–to–school list of everything your child will need. It’s never too early to stock up on pencils, erasers, markers and notebooks, so your kids are ready when it’s time to return to learning.
You can also get the kids involved when it comes to back–to–school shopping, so the task won’t seem like such a chore. Allow the kids to pick out what they’ll need — like backpacks, shoes and clothing — either online or at an actual store. Doing this early will help you avoid long lines and can help ease anxiety at home in the days leading up to the first day of school. Zulily has a great inventory of back to school essentials you’ll want to check out!
A learning space at home is a great place where you can store all school supplies and have them be easily accessible, whether your kids are learning remotely or in-person. A comfortable study space at home can be used as a homework station or a study corner if your child is taking part in distance learning. You can visit my blog to learn how to set up a learning space at home. If you set it up now, the kids can begin using it this summer when completing summer assignments. This can make the transition back to school much easier a couple of months down the line.
Start wiping out germs now
Back–to–school time often means germ season has arrived. Now might be a good time to stock up on extra cleaning supplies so you can help keep surfaces clean and germ–free at school and at home when it’s time to go back to school. Besides stocking up on the school supplies mentioned previously, you might also want to stock up on hand soap, sanitizer, disinfectant wipes, kid’s masks, and even some vitamin C and other multi-vitamins to build up kids’ immune systems and begin wiping out germs now.
We made it through a tough school year! It’s time to take a break and enjoy Summer but it’s also important to start planning ahead. This way you’ll be well–prepared no matter what back to school looks like for your family.