7 Tips to Help Students Start the School Year
Getting back into the school routine can be a rough transition from a long summer break, but with a little grit and some optimism, your family can make the first few weeks set the tone for a successful school year.
Education experts and any grade school teachers will tell you that the first few weeks of school are among the most important. Between the rush of morning routines and afterschool activities, this is the best time to establish expectations and daily habits for your family to follow for the rest of the school year.
Here are 7 strategies that can help you and your family start the school year off right:
Remember grit and optimism.
The first few weeks can be daunting for students, especially if this is their first time away from home for a long period of time. The Performance Character traits grit and optimism can help you and your family focus on accomplishments and daily growth. You can help your family develop these traits at home: Grit and Optimism.
Establish clear communications.
Every school year brings new challenges and homework expectations, so it’s important to touch base with your students on these throughout each week. Athlos encourages all parents to talk with their children for at least 15 minutes every day. By starting the school year with a pattern of communication, your children will become more open to discuss successes and challenges such as bullying and stress.
Set a routine everyone can agree with.
School-work-life schedules can be difficult to balance and will likely take several weeks to build a rhythm. These first weeks of the school year offer a perfect opportunity to hold a family meeting and establish expectations, schedules/routines, rules, and rewards for family members. Strive to hold additional meetings throughout the school year to follow up and make adjustments as needed.
Practice self-calming strategies together.
A new school year also means new challenges both physically and mentally. There are many ways to manage anxiety and stress as a family. These can include sports, exercise, meditation, hobbies, and more. In cases of severe anxiety and stress, seek professional help. Many schools have counselors and other resources available to help students manage anxiety and stress.
Learn to know your child’s teachers, classes, and friends.
You do not need to know every detail of your child’s life, but knowing their class schedule and names of teachers and friends will aid you in building a list of contacts for help and answers to questions throughout the school year. This will especially be helpfully in cases of emergency.
Learn how to navigate the school website.
Take a moment to become familiar with the areas of the school website you will use the most throughout the year. Please take a few minutes to locate the following on the school website:
- PowerSchool login
- Meal payment portal
- News & Updates section
- Calendar & Events tab
- Parent Resources tab
- School Newsletter
Volunteer at the school or PTA.
Athlos families are encouraged to donate at least 30 hours of their time each year in service to the school. By spending 30 minutes to 1 hour a week, you can find time to get involved in your student’s education and in your community and still meet your quota. There are dozens of volunteer opportunities at the school and with the PTA, contact the school today to find out what you can do to become involved.