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Your Back-to-School Checklist

It’s hard to believe that summer is nearing its end. For many parents, this time of year is about getting children organized and prepared to go back-to-school. While returning to school can be an exciting time for the entire family, it doesn’t come without a little bit of stress and anxiety.

To help ease the transition, we have pulled together a few fun and simple things you can do to help your family get into back-to-school mode:

(Re)Establish a Routine – Chances are your children have fallen out of their school routine over the summer months. A week or two before school begins, start reintroducing their old routine. Set the alarm clock so they gradually start waking-up a little earlier every day and give them their lunch around the same time they’ll have lunch at school. Set aside some time later in the day (or whenever they’d be doing their homework) and have them do quiet activities such as reading, putting together puzzles, and so on.

Be Organized – Transitioning back-to-school can be laden with stress and anxiety for the entire family. You can ease much of this anxiety by simply being prepared. A month or so before school starts, make a list of all of the supplies your children need and take inventory of their closet to determine whether new clothing is required. You may also want to set aside a few days during the month to go back-to-school shopping (more on this below). The day before school starts, help your children select their clothes and pack their backpack. You can also prepare their lunch, ensuring you have packed a well-balanced meal and healthy snacks they can eat with ease. To make the process of preparing lunches easier every day, plan ahead for the week. For a few creative bagged lunch ideas, click here.

Make it Fun By Creating a Tradition – For many, going back-to-school means new beginnings, so why not celebrate it by making it fun and creating new traditions that your children will remember for years to come.  Set aside a day to go back-to-school shopping for new clothes and school supplies. You could make a day of it by going for breakfast or lunch. Or how about instituting “the last dinner of summer,” a special dinner comprised of all their favourite foods? For more ideas on creating fun back-to-school traditions, click here.

Safety Rules – Whether your child is riding the school bus for the first time or is able to walk to and from school on their own, now is a good time to go over any general safety rules. Talk to your child about stranger safety and what to do if they get lost on the way home. Make sure they know all of their personal information (e.g., address and phone number) and that they always use the buddy system. For more information on these and other safety tips for kids, click here.

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