As a parent it is our dream to have our children succeed in school. We all want our child to get good grades, retain the information, get awards, respect adults and peers, and be well-liked. How can we help our child attain these goals? What can we do as parents to set our child up for success? Make it your mission to equip and prepare your child for school.
5 Steps to Prepare Your Child for School
As parents one of our jobs is to give our kids the tools to be successful in school. Here are 5 ways to prepare your child for school.
1. Follow a Routine
Children need structure, and benefit from doing things the same way and in the same order. This includes having a bedtime routine and a routine in the morning. Have them go to bed at the same time each night and wake up at the same time each morning. It can be difficult, but get them up with plenty of time in the morning so they do not have to rush. This will help them feel prepared for the day. For more on morning routines click here.
Here are some more benefits to having your child follow a routine:
- Doing things in the same order takes less time. They become familiar with what they are to do, so they do it faster.
- More prepared so less likely to forget something
- Builds confidence
- Feel in control
2. Set Expectations
Be clear with your child about school expectations. Go over school and classroom rules. Go through the daily schedule that includes before, during, and after school. Talk about the right way to do things. If needed, work with your child’s teacher to be on the same page so the child hears the same thing at home and school.
3. Equip the Child Physically
Buy Appropriate School Supplies
Get the school supply list as soon as it is available. Shop early and follow the list to get all the correct supplies. By shopping early you have the largest selection and guarantee all supplies are available. You may be able to save money shopping early with sales too.
In addition, prepare for at home as well. Buy supplies you don’t have at home so your child can easily do their homework without having to worry about transporting supplies.
Get Correct Clothes and Shoes
Next to prepare your child for school, purchase the correct clothes and shoes. If they are attending a uniform school get the correct uniform pieces. Consider buying multiples, or one for each day of the week so you do not have to constantly do laundry.
Uniform or not, make sure they have clothes and shoes they are comfortable in. This will help them be able to focus during the day because they are not worrying about what they are wearing. Furthermore, their wardrobe could boost their confidence and make them feel good.
Lastly, dress your child appropriately to match the weather. If they are too hot or cold it could cause unnecessary issues. Write their name in articles of clothing they may take on and off like jackets and sweatshirts. This way if it gets left behind and someone picks it up they know who to return it to.
Know the Lay of the Land
Before school starts take a tour of the building and the child’s classroom. Get to know the layout of school and how to get to the classroom. If possible have your child meet the teacher prior to school starting. Be sure to attend any school events leading up to the first day. This could include orientation, open house, picnics, and meet and greets. Get your child to feel comfortable with the staff and the building before the first day. This way everything isn’t new on the first day.
4. Equip the Child Socially and Mentally
Help prepare your child for school by teaching them how to interact and behave with other kids. Attend a part time preschool, daycare, or do playdates so they get used to being with other kids and adults. This way school won’t be a shock when they are not with you all the time. Teach them how to listen and respect other adults. In addition, this teaches them how to react to others positively.
Besides preparing for people, have conversations to prepare them for the rigor of the school day. Tell them about what they are going to experience throughout the day. Practice and role play the school setting beforehand. This will help limit the amount of surprises and shocking situations.
5. Be a Proactive Parent
Do your part as the parent to get involved and get information to successfully prepare your child for school. Ask questions to appropriate individuals and get answers. Get to know your child’s teachers and build a relationship with staff. Be sure to frequently check and read mail, email and newsletters from school. Also, be sure to check the website for updates.
Be present at your child’s school. Attend programs, performances, and events. The more you are there, the more your child sees you a part of their education success. Also, you will know what is going on, and know the staff better by being there. If something needs to be addressed you can take care of it immediately instead of letting it linger.
Final Thoughts on Preparing Your Child for School
Give your child the best chance of succeeding in school by preparing them for the biggest and longest event of their life. Overall, our children spend more time in school than they do with us. Therefore, help make school as beneficial as possible. Follow the steps above to help your child exceed their potential and excel in school.