It’s that time of year again: back-to-school!
It’s a joyous time for some parents:
“Ah, my child who stayed up until 3 a.m. and slept in until noon will be getting back on a sleep schedule.”
“My child who left dirty lunch plates around the house while watching television and complaining about there being ‘nothing to eat in the fridge’ will now be dining in the school cafeteria.”
“My child who picked fights with his siblings because he was bored will now be too busy doing math and social studies to be bored.”
But for other parents, it’s a time of dread:
“Ugh. I wonder how long it will take to start getting calls from the teacher about my child refusing to do classwork?”
“I wonder how many calls I’m going to get about my child starting fights on the playground?”
“I wonder if there’s anything I can do this year to get my child to finish her homework? I think I hate school more than my child does!”
Whether you’re anticipating the school year with joy or dread, it’s just around the corner. Many parents find it’s helpful to have a plan in place ahead of time. It may be a simple plan: going to the school orientation; meeting the teacher casually; helping your child find their way around the building or practicing opening a locker for the first time.
If your child displays behavior problems, your plan may be more involved: putting together a schedule or routine he will follow at home for things such as homework or chores; putting a system in place for rewarding positive behavior; or scheduling proactive meetings with school staff if your child has a specialized educational plan in place.
No matter what your situation is with your child, having a plan in place can help start the year off on a positive note.