The Back-to-School Checklist for Parents

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Getting back into the swing of things is the hardest part of starting a new school year. It’s hard for parents and children alike, who have had months away from the scheduled days of classes, homework, and after-school practices.

Below are some tips to help you get back into the school-time groove:

 

Get your bedtime back on schedule

Nothing puts a damper on the start of a school year like sleep deprived kids crashing during afternoon classes. If you start a week or two before the first day of school, you can slowly get your summer sleep schedule out of your system and get back to that school schedule. Putting children to bed 10 minutes earlier every night makes the switch a lot easier.

 

Keep up with the forms as they come in

Every year, parents are bombarded with forms ranging from school supplies to health forms to permission slips for future field trips. Starting at day one, collect and make a copy of all the forms you sign for your child. Consider organizing a filing system for everything.

 

Get the right backpack

Backpacks make it easy for children to carry books and school supplies to and from school every day, but the wrong backpack can be detrimental to the health of your child. Using oversized, overstuffed backpacks can lead to back problems for students. Picking out the right backpack for your child and educating them on the proper way to carry a backpack (i.e., both straps over your shoulders) can help avoid future health issues caused by improper use.

 

Post your child’s schedule somewhere you see daily

Coordinating your family’s busy life is a challenging task. Lighten the load a little bit by keeping your child’s schedule in a prominent location for everyone to see. This keeps you and everyone else aware of what’s going on in your child’s life and brings a little bit more order to the chaos. Does your family have time to go to that party? Check the schedule. This also helps you be aware of what is going on in your child’s life so you can prepare them best to succeed on that math test. Lastly, but most importantly, is that the schedule gives you awareness of what’s going on in your child’s life so you can engage your child with specific questions like “What did you learn in Mr. Patterson’s class?” You’re guaranteed a better answer than if you asked, “How was school?”

 

Get your children vaccinated

Most schools require your children to be up-to-date on their shots before entering certain grades. We’ve put together a list of free immunization clinics that are happening around Central Arkansas here for your convenience. Keep both your children and their friends healthy and happy.

2015 Schedule of Free Immunization Locations