Transitioning to a school routine can be a challenging time for children, causing stress and anxiety for both parents and kids alike. However, with a few simple strategies, this period can be made smoother and more enjoyable for everyone. In this blog post, we will explore some valuable tips to help your child thrive as they start or head back to school. Keep reading if you want to make this journey for your child smooth, and ultimately, exciting, joyful, and successful!
Maintain a Consistent Schedule
I am sure you have heard this a million times, but it's worthy of being repeated! Creating a consistent daily routine provides a sense of stability for children, which is especially crucial during the back-to-school transition. A well-structured schedule helps them know what to expect each day, reducing anxiety and ensuring they feel prepared for upcoming challenges.
Use of Educational Toy and Sensory Tools
Educational toys are a great option to mask the 'learning process.' Hands-on activities and play are the way to a child's heart, so stocking up on educational toys is a wonderful way to prep or supplement learning. If your child suffers from anxiety, loves to move, or fidgets, providing adaptive sensory tools can help both inside the classroom and at home. Below are a list of some top items we sell at Made2Motivate, as well as some great options that can be found on Amazon!
🌞 Weighted Tools to Reduce Anxiety
Weighted Should & Lap Pads: excellent tools for children who experience anxiety or like to fidget. The gentle pressure and tactile stimulation they provide can be calming and help children focus better during study sessions or class time.
Weighted blankets are a wonderful tool to use after returning from school, or while sleeping. Like weighted lap pads, they provide deep pressure that helps calm the nervous system so your child can relax and rest well. An alternative option is weighted stuffed animals.
For children who need to develop a better writing grasp, assorted pencil grips can be highly beneficial. These grips promote proper finger positioning and reduce strain, making writing more comfortable and enjoyable for them. We offer a package bundle so you can find which best suits your child!
The use of manipulatives can significantly enhance a child's ability to retain knowledge by providing a more engaging and interactive learning experience. Manipulatives are physical objects or tools that students can touch, move, and manipulate to understand abstract concepts more concretely. Here's how they contribute to improved knowledge retention:
Hands-on Learning: Manipulatives enable hands-on learning, allowing children to actively explore and interact with the subject matter. When students physically handle objects related to the topic they are studying, they create a stronger connection between the concept and its real-world representation, leading to better retention.
Multi-Sensory Experience: By engaging multiple senses, manipulatives provide a multi-sensory learning experience. For example, when learning math using counting blocks or cubes, children not only see the numbers but also feel and hear the blocks as they move them. This multisensory approach reinforces learning and memory.
Conceptual Understanding: Manipulatives help children grasp complex concepts by breaking them down into simpler, more tangible parts. For instance, using fraction tiles to understand fractions or using base-ten blocks to comprehend place value in math allows children to form a deeper understanding of these abstract concepts.
Reduced Cognitive Load: Manipulatives alleviate cognitive load by externalizing parts of the learning process. This means children can focus more on understanding the concept itself, rather than trying to remember abstract information, resulting in improved retention and recall.
Here are some top picks we recommend!
Encourage Open Communication
During this transition, it's essential to maintain open lines of communication with your child. Encourage them to share their thoughts and feelings about school, and be there to address any concerns they may have. Providing a safe space for them to express themselves can help alleviate anxiety and build their confidence. I personally love the "Mom and Me" drawing journal. Most kids love to draw, and it is a non-intrusive method for sparking up a conversation and talking about their day. You can also use regular notepads! Writing Pads are also a motivating option- but keep in mind they won't document the journey!
Organize and Prepare Together
Involve your child in organizing and preparing for the school year. This could include shopping for school supplies together or setting up a designated study area. By involving them in these activities, they will feel more in control and excited about the upcoming school year.
If you have a child of determination, prep your child well in advance so they are familiar with what to expect. Here are some examples: Get them on their new sleep schedule, create a visual schedule of morning and afternoon routines, and prepare them for what they will likely encounter at school (attend meet the teacher, talk about the subjects they will learn about, appropriate behaviors at school, making friends, what they will eat.)
For all children, the more prepared they are the better! If you are looking for a wonderful way to involve your child in preparing for their first day of school, check out "Get Ready for 1st Day of School: Create Your Own Keepsake Book." This interactive activity book is designed specifically to prepare kids for the big day in two ways: create excitement and ease anxiety!
Positive Reinforcement and Celebrating Achievements
Celebrate your child's achievements, no matter how small they may seem. Positive reinforcement boosts their self-esteem and motivates them to excel academically and socially. Reinforcement Stickers and Reward Charts are great options. 😃⭐
Set Realistic Expectations
Setting realistic expectations for the school year is essential. Understand your child's abilities and limitations, and avoid putting unnecessary pressure on them. Instead, focus on celebrating their progress and efforts.
Transitioning back to school can be a challenging time, but with the right approach and tools, it can also be an exciting and rewarding experience for your child. By following these helpful tips, you can help your child thrive academically and emotionally throughout the school year. Remember to maintain open communication, provide support, and celebrate their achievements every step of the way. Together, you and your child can make this school year a successful one!