If you are like me, you are counting the hours until schools starts.  And if you are like me, you will have to spend some time breaking habits that your kids picked up while at their grandparents, stepparents, extended family, and every other place they visited during the summer!

Make the “back to school” transition easier on yourself and the kids by following the tips below a week or two before school starts.

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I am guilty of allowing Journey watch way too much television during the summer.  Now I am stuck with a zombie that only answers to call “time to eat!”  She cannot focus on ANYTHING as long as the television is on.  So each day, I limit the amount of time she is allowed to watch so that by the time school starts we are back to our usual one hour of television per day.

Set the clock

There are no “morning people” in my house.  Getting everyone up and out on time is something that I do not miss over the summer.  To adjust, we start setting the alarm.  The earlier Journey wakes up, the earlier she will go to bed.  It also helps that I fill the void left by the first tip with lots of physical activity to get her nice and tired before bedtime.  And of course, napping is not allowed!

Brush up on basic skills

Trying to keep little brains in school mode all year is near impossible!  To help keep Journey on track, we visit the library every couple of weeks.  In addition to a few fun books, she selects a book about a subject that she is interested in learning more about (i.e. birds, India, dinosaurs).  After she reads the book, she draws pictures and writes facts that she finds interesting.  It’s a great activity that covers reading, writing, comprehension, art and math (depending on the book topic).

Set Goals

Each year around this time, Journey and I have a conversation about what she would like to accomplish during the school year academically and personally.    She writes down her goals and posts them so that they can be seen daily.  We reviewed the goals periodically to ensure that she remains focused on achieving them.

Last year, Journey set goals to:

–   Become a better reader

–   Be a better friend

–   Be a better listener

I am happy to say that she achieved all of them…although I think we can all work on being better listeners:)

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