Watching your son or daughter head off to a new year of school is one of the many joys of parenthood. Helping them prepare for back to school can be quite the opposite, though. A recent article from the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center offers many helpful tips for preparing children, particularly those with ADD and ADHD, for the upcoming school year.
Preschoolers and Kindergarteners
Young children can be nervous, or even afraid to start school, so it is important to help them feel comfortable. Take your child to visit their campus and meet their teachers before the school year begins. Try talking to them about some of the changes they will encounter, such as making new friends and having a new teacher. Encouraging appropriate behavior is also very important. Focus on disciplines such as listening and following directions, and motivate your child to share with their siblings and friends. Young children can also benefit from having a favorite photo in their backpack to remind them of home. Educational videos can also be a good way to encourage success in school and develop an interest in learning. You can visit one of our movie nights, held every Tuesday and Thursday at 7:00 pm for a fun and educational family event. Upcoming movies are posted and updated on our website. Reach us at (503)388-5468 to reserve your family’s spot.
Elementary School Children
Children in elementary school may not need as much hand-holding as younger children, but can still benefit from similar approaches. Go with your child to orientation or a few days before if possible. Help your child locate their classes, lockers, and other important areas such as student services. This age-group should be motivated to participate in extracurricular activities such as sports, which can help improve their social relationships, academic success, and self-confidence. This is also a good time to start talking with your child about the dangers of risky behaviors, such as alcohol, sex, and drugs. Some children begin experimenting with substances as early as middle school. If you are having a difficult time bringing this subject up or expressing the dangers involved, consider visiting your local Woodburn Pediatrics Clinic for help.
Teenagers are transitioning into adulthood and want to feel more independent. Encourage useful skills that will benefit them later on in life such as goal setting and planning, in addition to setting aside homework time every day after school. Communicate with your teen by asking open ended questions and staying optimistic about their grades and overall academic success. Positive thinking and behavior from parents may help motivate kids to be more hopeful about their success in school.
Other tips to ensure that your child enjoys going back to school include letting your child pick their own backpack and school supplies, and maintaining involvement in all aspects of school. Contact Woodburn Pediatrics with any questions about your child’s health as they prepare to return to school.