Here are a few steps to guarantee you turn the page to begin the next chapter for a successful school year.
Know the school principal. If the principal is new to the school community, do not refer to the practices of the previous principal. Develop a relationship with the new principal and get to know his or her expectations. Become an active member of the PTO or Principal’s Advisory Panel.
Make sure you know and commit to memorizing your child’s teacher’s name(s) and room number. For middle and high school students the homeroom teacher or team name (if applicable) is a great place to start.
If your child has medical needs, be sure you connect with the school nurse and complete all necessary forms. Make sure necessary prescription medicines are stored in the nurse’s office with the appropriate forms on file.
Set a routine for bed times. Recommended sleeping patterns for school age children should be followed and a part of your routine.
- 3-6 years old: 10-12 hours per day. Children in this age group should go to bed between 7 and 9 p.m. and wake up around 6 and 8 a.m. In pre-school most children are still napping by Kindergarten 5 or 6 years of age naps are not included in the school day.
- 7-12 years old: 10-11 hours per day. Children in this age group tend to have more social, school and family activities and bedtimes gradually become later. Most 12 year olds are going to bed by 9 p.m. A good practice would be to look at the range between 7:30 and 10:00 and set a consistent time that will allow your child to receive the recommended sleeping pattern for this age range.
- 12-18 years old: 8-9 hours per day. Sleep needs remain just as vital to health and well-being for teenagers as when they were younger. Children in this age range need to begin scheduling their study time and activities utilizing the academic planners and/or electronic calendars to help monitor time management.
Continuously update your contact information as changes occur.
Read the school and district handbook.
Post the district calendar and monthly menus on your refrigerator in plain view
Make sure your child has the appropriate tools to start the school year. Many school districts have distributed their supply lists to local department stores. They also make these items available on their district websites.
As you start this school year make a commitment to engage more in your child’s education than you did last year. If you are extremely involved already continue your plan and find one area you can strengthen to continue to make a difference.