Monday, August 20, 2012

Get the school year off to a good start

Today is the first day of school for many of our children in our community. Help your kids get back into the school mode by establishing a routine. Children may balk at having to do their homework right after school or dinner but routines teach children responsibility and makes them feel more secure by knowing what is expected and when.

It is sometimes hard to establish and stick with routines. Children have the uncanny ability to get us to throw our hands up in the air and just give up! But don’t worry….if you can just stick to your guns and not make it an option to argue about most kids will fall into line. It may take a couple of weeks but you can do it!

In order to establish a routine, it might be helpful to get some input from your child. Give them some flexibility----let them choose whether they want to do their chores right after school or their homework. This gives you the opportunity to remind them that this was the routine they wanted.

An after school routine might look like this:

• Have a healthy after school snack

• Take the dog for a walk, feed the fish or get the mail

• Get homework done

• Dinner with family

• 1 hour of free time to play

• Bath time

• Reading before bed

• Lights out

All cell phones should be left on the kitchen counter before bed so kids are not up all night texting. While children should not have computers or tv’s in their bedrooms, should you choose for them to have these, make a rule that computers and tv’s are shut down at bedtime.

Sleep is more important than we realize. Sleep gives your brain the opportunity to organize the day’s thoughts and gives your body the time it needs to regenerate. 7 to 12 year olds should sleep on average between 10-11 hours. 12-18 year olds should catch 8-9 hours nightly. Children who are sleep deprived are more apt to be cranky, have a harder time paying attention in class and their coordination may be slightly off. For those who are on a sports team, a tired player can impact the outcome of the game.

We wish each of our kids a fantastic school year!

1 comment:

Phoenix Family Medical Clinic said...

These are great tips! Parents should attempt to try this!