The first thing that usually eases off during the holidays is bedtime. In the summer it just doesn’t matter if we all sleep in and stay up to later than usual. So as the start of school approaches begin to pull bedtime back more into line with the norm. It is very important for children to get their sleep. Just like adults children get grumpy when they are tired. They function better, learn quicker and are much happier to be with when they have had the appropriate sleep. So slowly begin to bring their bedtimes into line with the normal routine.
Children forget so much of what they have learned over the summer. As a teacher you expect to retrain children in most areas but as parents you can help your child get a head start to the year. What you have them do will, of course, depend on their age but it is always good to get them reading. Have them read to you or read a book on their own and then have them share with you what it was about. Have them write their name, go over things that are number related, even discuss with them what it is they did over the summer so they will be able to communicate it. You could have them draw a picture and/or write their favourite part of their holiday. There are also computer age related programmes, which you can get them to work on.
Talk to them about their new teacher. If you know the person’s name, begin to talk about it. It will help settle any anxiety if they know where they are going and who will be there. Tell them it will be exciting and they will have a great year. Be positive with them, as attitude is half the battle. What a person thinks affects their behaviour! You want them to think this will be fun and I can do it. So tell them that.
Begin this process of preparation with your children. Get their brains thinking and in gear. You want them to be able to feel successful at school from day one. Plan some of the suggested activities for them before school starts because I suspect you too are counting down the days till the school gates open for another season!