Back to School: Easing Your Family Back Into Routines

Ready or not, the 2022-2023 school year is here, and your family is in for a year of exciting new beginnings. We’re excited to welcome students back, but we know that a couple of months away from campus can make it difficult for many students to transition back to school. They’ve been on vacations, spent long days in the sunshine, attended day camps and sleepaway camps, and much more. Directing everyone’s attention back to the schedule of everyday life can be challenging. Fortunately, we have a lot of experience with new school years and have compiled a short list of parenting tips that will help you ease back into routine and start the academic year on a positive note.

Start With A Calm Evening

Adults know that a good day starts with having a good night’s sleep. Most families get pretty relaxed on bedtimes during the summer – a natural response to long days, late sunsets, and nothing but fun to force you out of bed in the morning. But, reestablishing a good nighttime routine is an essential first step to getting your family back on track this school year. A regular bedtime is a great place to start, but an evening routine can also include a series of other habits that help them settle into bed and prepare for the coming day. Pair the bath, teeth brushing, and nighttime stories you’re used to with the habit of preparing their backpacks for school and laying out their clothes for the coming day, and you’ll see how helpful a good routine can be.

Make Your Mornings Flow

Hopefully, the success of your evening routine produces happy, energetic children the following morning. And since mornings can be hectic when you’re trying hard to get everyone out of the house, implementing a morning routine is the next step in getting back into the school year. When our kids know what to expect from their day, they can be more helpful and self-sufficient. It may even be a good idea to provide them with a checklist so that your older children can walk themselves through the morning routine step by step. Breakfast, teeth brushed, dressed for school, lunch packed – check!

Time To Cut Back On Screen Time

Screen time is another thing that we parents tend to give in on during the summer. Between long car drives to visit family or parents looking for ways to entertain their kids, the televisions, tablets, and smartphones can take up way more of their time than you’d usually allow. Research shows that kids with more screen time access are more likely to display behavior problems. The truth is, we don’t know for sure what’s happening in our brains and our kids’ brains when we stare mindlessly at a screen. But many parents can tell from personal experience that screen time affects their children. Putting limitations on screen time may get quite a bit of pushback initially, but it will help your kids transition back into the school year routine in the long run.

Get Organized

A clear space equals a clear mind. Have your kids’ rooms become a little haphazard this summer? Take some time to help them clear their rooms of clutter, organize their school clothes and supplies, and prepare a space in your home where they can work on homework and keep their schoolwork organized. Getting them involved in the process is a great way to introduce new responsibilities into their lives. While your kids may push back against your plans to get organized for the new year, we all know how good it feels to start a new season of life on the right foot.

We hope that the students and parents of the St. Barnabas community are as excited about the upcoming school year as we are. We have lots of goodness planned, but the thing we’re most looking forward to is feeling the hustle and bustle of a busy campus after months away. If you’d like more parenting tips from the St. Barnabas community, follow along on our blog, or contact us today for more information about how to join us.

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