Helping your kids get ready for a new school year is a necessary but often thankless task. And it creates even more chaos when they’re starting a new school. Whether they’re moving from nursery or playgroup to reception or starting big school, it can be a worrying time for you and them. On top of concerns such as making friends and hearing good things at parents’ evening, there are lots of logistical things to arrange. You need to get them the essential equipment, from uniforms to pencil cases, and keep track of a new schedule. If your child will soon be starting a new school soon, use these tips to prepare them and yourself.
Making Sure They Have Everything
Ensuring that your child is ready for school can be a hassle, but it’s a necessary evil. No one likes “back to school” shopping, but even without the need for a new uniform, there are always things that need replacing. The first thing you can do is find out the dress code for the new school. Do they need to wear a jumper, blazer or tie with the school logo on it, and if so, where can you buy them? Many uniforms are similar and not too complicated, running along the lines of black trousers and shoes with a white shirt. Then there’s their PE kit, stationery, and other bits and pieces.
Preparing Them for the New Environment
As well as the things you’ll need to buy them, your child might need other materials to prepare them for a day at their new school. Children moving to secondary education might need materials such as a student planner or timetable, which they may receive before they start. One of the primary sources of worry for both of you could be getting to school. Whether you take them, someone picks them up or they go on their own, it might help to have a trial run. Once at school, it’s important they understand what’s expected of them, from both you and the school, but also how their day will be structured.
Getting to Know a New System
You also need to put in a lot of effort to learn about dealing with a new school. Being involved in their education is important, but it means you have to keep track of homework, school trips, teachers’ names and more. If the school offers online tools to manage everything, make sure you take advantage of them. For example, if there’s a school online payment system, it can make it much easier to manage expenses. You can use it to pay for school dinners and school trips without having to fiddle with cash or cheques.
Dealing with Worries
Naturally, there will be worrying all around when it’s time for school to start. But sometimes it’s important to put your anxieties aside so that you can address your child’s. For example, you might be worried about them going on a school trip or getting bullied – but so are they. Be careful to try and allay their fears, instead of adding to them. Be there for them so they can talk about how things are going, especially in the early days.
Starting a new school can be stressful for children and parents, but everyone will get used to it eventually. If you prepare everyone in the beginning, it will be easier to deal with.