Back to School-Ideas to help EVERY Child
For many children back to school may be exciting, seeing old friends, making new
ones and being in a higher grade. However for some children they feel that back
to school is back to doom because of the anxiety that it brings. Here are a few
ideas to help EVERY child succeed when getting back into the swing of things!
I know it sounds simple but putting the back to school date on the calendar and
counting down the days until then goes to help reduce anxiety in everyone.
Frequently remind the child/children how many days it is until the “big day”, have
fun with it!
Plan your shopping trips for clothing, supplies and other appointments so that
everyone is on the same page.
Children thrive on routine- For special needs children changes in their routines can
make everyone’s life hard, therefore you want to start adjusting times at least
two weeks in advance. Start with 30 minutes earlier bedtime for a few days then
30 minutes earlier wake up times until they are back into the school time routine.
Sleep besides breakfast is important to keep growing minds alert and behaviors
Structure- set daily routine and place what times and what they will be doing in
a prominent place. This helps everyone (especially parents) to get back into the
swing of a school day.
First year? Do a few dry runs of going to the bus, to school and to other places
that they will encounter during a typical school day. It goes a long way to reduce
anxiety for the first timer!
Meet with the teacher- doing so helps you and the child/children know who
and where things are for the first day. Find out where the child/children will
be throughout the day and what times. This was if there is a problem it can be
taken care of quickly. It is also a good idea to write a letter to the teacher(s) and
explain a little bit about your child to them. If your child has special needs writing
a letter with the child’s strengths and weaknesses’ helps the teacher remember
what your child needs. Does your child have a diagnosis that the teacher needs
to vigilant of? (ie: epilepsy, what do the child’s seizures look like, or for behaviors
what makes the child get angry?) Make sure in the letter you let the teacher know
ways to contact you and that you want to keep the lines of communication open
for a great year.
Set Homework times- Make sure the child/children have a quiet space with all the
supplies they will need. Take into account any extracurricular activities they may
have when planning homework time.
Where will important papers go daily? Making a space for these papers ensures
that the field trip slip is signed and any communication between the parent(s) and
teacher is read daily.
Get the clothes out- sounds a bit crazy especially for a teen that may change 100
times before leaving for school but for many children picking out their outfits the
night before helps make the day start right.
Breakfast- the most important meal of the day! Lay out the items you can the
night before because it will help everyone be in a calmer mood to start their days.
Health and Safety-
Doctors Appointments- Make sure to get all important shots, physicals, eye and
dental exams done before school starts! In cases where children have medication
they must take at school make the appointments as soon as you receive the
paperwork from the school nurse so that the child does not miss a dose and is
able to have any emergency medication they may need.
Talk to- Make an appointment to see the nurse, administration and
transportation before school starts so that if there are any new allergies or
diagnosis they can be discussed before the chaotic first day.
Once they children are back in school, you the parent, can sit back enjoy the new
routine because everyone will know the who, the what, and the where of things!
Heather Bryant is a blogging momma of a special needs child. She has
implemented these ideas for 2 years now and they have made going back to
school much easier on both bub and herself. You can find Heather at:
Life with DisAbilties: http://www.lifewithdisabilites.com