Did you know that we are coming up on August – Romance Awareness Month!!!!!
JK! It is that, but that’s not our concern, nor is National Goat Cheese Month. I’m here for Get Ready for Kindergarten Month. Fortunately, this nationally recognized… celebration (?) is self-explanatory. For all the new young ones starting school for the first time, this is the time to get ready! While schools start at different times depending on where you live, most families are thinking about back to school starting in the month of August. Even if your child is beyond kindergarten, hopefully these few tips can help set them back on track for school.
Have fun asking tons of questions
Kids will be facing tons of questions from teachers and peers when they return to school in August or September. Questioning helps build critical thinking skills and increases self-efficacy. But it can be hard to know what questions to ask your child while not feeling like their teacher. Try asking them about how they feel. What they liked about an activity. What their favorite part of a day or week was. If you do activities with them, ask them what is was like for them. What did they enjoy? What do they want to do again? Is there anything they’ve been wanting to do that you haven’t done yet? While it may seem like asking about preferences are not related to critical thinking, helping a child articulate their own ideas is a HUGE step in bolstering those skills!
Find playful ways to incorporate math and science into summer activities
Maybe it’s converting measurements for baking. Or it could be counting the type of plant or bug in your yard or on your block. So much of STEM is being curious! Just support your student in engaging this curiosity.
Talk about the transition
Talk through what the return to school will be like. Familiarize yourself and your student with what the procedures in the school day will be. Also, start to practice your morning routine at home. ChildWatch is a great resource to support communication between you and your child’s teachers. Even the small effort of shifting your child’s lunch to school lunch time will help them tremendously in the transition!
Make the most of the rest of summer!
One of the most common questions kids face when they return to school is: “what did you do this summer?” Help your kids have a wealth of experiences to draw on. This way they will feel equipped to answer this question. And it doesn’t have to be anything big or flashy. Sure, you might know some families who spend the summer vacationing in Europe. But, that isn’t a necessity to having an amazing summer! Summer could be about an awesome beach trip, or a wild scavenger hunt in the back yard. It could be about spending time exploring your local library, planting something new in the garden, or visiting a friend far away (even virtually). As long as your little one can get excited about it, it will be a fantastic story to tell when they get back to school.