Getting Back Into Routine
The thought of going back to school can make some kids a bit nervous, especially after being away for so long. However, starting to ease into routine a few weeks before can help. Write a list of the things you are looking forward to, reconnect with friends and remind kids it’s normal to feel nervous and not want to go back. When it comes to easing into routine here are a few things you can do:
What Kids Can Do:
1. Start going to bed earlier and waking up earlier and earlier so that you are close to normal when school starts.
2. Limit late night meals
3. Avoid video games and screen time after 9 or 10pm (depending on age)
4. Choose your outfit the night before
5. On the first days, wake up a little earlier so you don’t feel rushed.
6. Eat a proper breakfast that includes some protein to make it last longer.
7. Pack your lunch the night before and be sure to eat it. The energy you get from snack and lunch will fuel you for the day.
8. Be active daily. Getting back to sports and being active can also help reduce stress.
What Parents Can Do:
1. Start getting into regular meal-times a couple weeks before school starts with earlier dinner and consistent breakfast times.
2. Buy new lunch bags if the old ones need replacing.
3. Put out non-perishable breakfast foods and set the breakfast table the night before
4. Write a list of foods available in the house for after school snacks. Frozen fruit for smoothies, cheese and crackers, cut up melon, trail mix, cereal and milk, peanut butter and apple slices, fruit and yogurt etc.
5. Don’t buy junk food. If it’s there you can’t expect them not to eat it.
6. Talk with the kids about their favorite lunches and write a list so you have options available.
7. Help make lunches the night before. Give examples of healthy lunches they can copy if they are making it themselves.
8. Plan your dinner meals before grocery shopping so that you can shop once a week and save time for cooking.
9. If you come home late and dinner is a challenge, try to do some cooking on the weekend and freeze it. Chilli, spaghetti sauce, curry and cooked chicken breast make for easy dinners. Don’t forget that a homemade pasta with tomato sauce and frozen veggies is better for you than stopping for pizza or McDonalds