Going back to school can be daunting for some kids. Even if they enjoy school, it could be hard getting back into the morning routine and they may be apprehensive about certain changes (such as a new classroom or new teacher). To avoid tantrums about not wanting to go to school, it could be worth spending time getting kids excited. Last year, starting Kindergarten for the first time was a difficult adjustment for my son, who has mostly been in the care of family, not daycare. I thought going back this year in 1st grade would be a breeze, but it still took time (less than last year) to get him accustomed to getting up early, spending so many hours in the classroom, and getting acquainted with a new teacher and new classmates.
Here are just a few tricks for helping to get your kids excited about going back to school.
Help Them Manage Expectations
Kids may be nervous about having a new teacher or doing different tasks. Make sure to do your research into what is new and help your kids become familiarized. This could include helping kids remember the name of their new teacher, the location of their new classroom, or getting them excited about certain new subjects that they will be learning. It could also be important to attend any open house days if your child is attending a new school or facing other big changes. For kids who struggle at school, you could even consider doing some refresher lessons at home to help them feel more prepared.
Many kids look forward to seeing their friends again after the summer break. You could help to build up this excitement by planning meetups with classmates before the new school year starts. Connect with parents of kids’ friends and ask if their child is free to do a playdate – even if it’s just an hour at a local park or indoor play area. Having a few familiar faces in the classroom will help your child ease their anxiety and have a go-to friend to talk to.
Back to School Shopping
You may need to buy new clothing and supplies for your kids for the school year. To help kids get more excited about going to school, consider taking them along with you as you shop and let them help you choose new supplies, such as a new backpack, lunchbox, or water bottle. This will add an element of excitement and anticipation for the new school year and getting to use their new items.
Back to School Inspiration
You may be able to find some inspirational quotes to help get kids motivated about school. These back to school quotes are a great example – consider whether any of these quotes are likely to inspire your kids. Alternatively, you may be able to draw inspiration from books, TV shows, and movies that your kids love.
Many young kids love to play pretend. To get them excited about going back to school, consider setting up a pretend school environment at home. You could play the teacher and they could play the student or vice versa. You could also get toys involved to act as other students and use real props that your child uses at school such as their school bag. You may even be able to run through the whole school morning routine as part of a game to help remind kids of what they need to do. By making it fun and humorous, kids won’t even realize that they’re rehearsing for the school run.