Going back to school can be a fun time for many kids, but it can also be stressful. Adjusting to a new schedule and preparing for the school year along with a new teacher and classroom can be overwhelming for the entire family, especially when kids are younger. Parents might also be worried about paying for all the supplies and getting everyone ready in the morning.
Back to School: Easing Anxiety
for Both You and Your Child
Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be a stressful undertaking. Getting organized before school starts will go a long way toward getting your family ready for the new school year, so it’s important to start gathering supplies, work out a routine for everyone, and think about what will make your life easier in the mornings as soon as possible. This might include creating a space for your children to keep their backpacks and shoes, laying out clothing the night before, and preparing lunches ahead of time. Keep reading to find out how you can ease anxiety on the first day of school and beyond for everyone in the household.
Getting organized is one of the major keys to making sure everyone has a great school year. From creating a quiet, distraction-free place where kids can do their homework to setting up a spot to lay out the next day’s outfit, backpack, and shoes, preparing ahead of time will give you peace of mind and make the mornings go much more smoothly for the entire family. Enlist your children and partner in helping prepare. When it’s a team effort, it’s a habit that’s likely to stick.
With all that extra preparation, it could even lead to a smoother morning.
Start the Mornings Right
Mornings can be tough on everyone when school starts, but if you have a plan for breakfast and get the household on a good routine, things will be much easier. Waking up early may not be everyone’s idea of fun, but it will allow your kids to have enough time to eat breakfast and get ready without having to rush. You can also prepare a breakfast casserole or make ham and egg biscuits the night before to ensure everyone has protein to start the day off right.
Get a Good Deal
Buying school supplies can be a massive undertaking, especially if you have more than one child. The shopping bill will really add up as you pile notebooks, crayons, markers, and backpacks into the cart, but if you plan ahead, you can save quite a bit of money. By buying in bulk, downloading store apps that will save money on certain purchases, and looking for online deals, cashback opportunities, and coupons, you can ensure that back-to-school shopping is stress-free.
Of course, one of the most difficult expenditures is the computer. At some point, older children will need their own computer to facilitate studying and required papers. If your child needs a new computer this year, do yourself a favor and check out reviews to find the best kid-friendly laptop. It also helps to determine all the ways your child will use the computer, which can inform your decisions on software, security programs and necessary features.
Create an Area for Homework
It can’t be said enough: Giving your kids a distraction-free zone to do their homework will help prevent anxiety and allow them to focus on the job at hand. Separate the workspace from any play areas and make sure there is adequate lighting and a comfy spot to sit in; this will ensure your little ones can get their work done on time without unnecessary stress.
Getting everyone ready for a new school year will take some time and patience, but with a good plan and a little preparation from all involved, you and your family can reduce stress and anxiety and simply enjoy the process. Get your family on a good routine — including a set bedtime — so that everyone will get enough rest. This is critical for young people and will help them focus and perform better in school and beyond.
In an instant a perfectly beautiful day can turn into an “inferno” you must survive.
The day was beautiful. One of those typical bright sunny Florida days. I sat watching the wake from the boat propellers as we headed back to shore. At eight years old I didn’t have a care in the world.
We were returning from a fun day of deep sea fishing. My brother was putting away all the fishing gear, mom was down in the galley cleaning up, Jay Jay (my dog) was sleeping on the seat pad covering one of the outboard engines, and dad was on the fly bridge steering us back to the marina.
Then suddenly there was the sound of an explosion coming from behind me. I spun around to witness fire and smoke billowing from the engines.
With one phone call your life can change. Would you be ready?
The phone rang during work hours. “Hello, Connie. Your mom is in the hospital.” I sat in silence. Suddenly nothing matter but getting to her. I shut down my computer, packed an overnight bag, and made the drive to the hospital.
My mind was swirling. It is hard to explain how your thoughts can bounce all over the place… my mom, my work, my travel schedule, my book. What does this mean? God help me!
During my drive I felt the need to call the president of the company I was working for and share the news. His first response was like none other I had received – “Family first, and we will be praying for your mom.” I had heard him say this many, many times, but this time it was directed at me. They were life-giving words when I needed them most. Even knowing that my work load was very high, his concern was for my mom.
Once I arrived at the hospital, I had to assess the situation. What was wrong? How long would Mom be there? What would be our game plan going forward?
A new year! One of my favorite things about beginning a new year, is the chance for a fresh start. A time to reflect on the past and begin casting a vision for a new year. This allows you to look forward to what the next year might bring.
New Year’s resolutions abound every January. Do you make any? I’ve been known to make, and break, a few!
Many resolutions focus on something we can do better, whether it’s losing weight, eating healthier, making more money, or having a better outlook on life.
Instead of focusing solely on what I can improve upon, our family would focus on where we are as a family and where would we like to be in the future. With an emphasis on relationships within the family unit. (more…)
Once, while swimming in the ocean, I could feel the current pulling my body towards the swell as a wave was building. At the right moment, the wave was going to break and continue toward the shoreline. Would we catch it or let it pass us by?
This made me think about how we have lived our lives. We were enjoying where we are when, without notice, we would feel a pulling to go in a different direction.
Eighteen years ago my husband and I had a dream. To have a thriving business at home. I had already left my career in the corporate world but now we wanted to figure out how we could we get dad home too.
He was a director at an engineering firm in the big city. Life was going well; he was even voted “Young Engineer of the Year” by his peers. Problem was we didn’t want the 8-5 life for our family. We wanted dad around more. Our five children were hitting the teen years and we wanted to have as much time with them as possible during these important years.
That’s when we made a decision to do something that no one around us was doing. To start our own engineering firm from our home. This was during a time when working from home wasn’t acceptable, practical, or even doable for an engineer.
That didn’t stop us, for our lives were marked by doing the impossible.
It’s that time of year when we receive end of the year test results or portfolio reviews stating, in print, how our children are doing. This means excitement for a job well done for some and anxiety for those whose kids did not do so well.
One phase I hear often is, “My child is performing ahead of grade level!” How many times have your heard that phrase uttered in conversations by well-meaning moms? My guess is more often than you can count. As a matter of fact, I too have spoken them publicly a time or two.
Understandably, Moms feel a sense of pride when their child excels and they want to share this good news. Sometimes we share because validation is needed for a job well done. Goodness knows a homeschool mom doesn’t usually get many pats on the back. It’s not likely that the kids will say good job.
I remember times when some of my children did really well and others didn’t. I learned early on how my words, innocent as they were, could cause others to doubt their own ability to teach or their child’s ability to learn. That was troubling to me as that wasn’t my intent.
What happens to the mom who has a child that is not performing at grade level? Their child is well, average or worse below average. The pressure she feels can create anxiety. This internal stress can begin a downward spiral for both the parent and child if not properly thought through.
Here are couple principles to think about regardless of what your child’s results are: