As fall arrives, so does the beginning of a new school year. Although the start of the school year can be exciting, it can also be overwhelming and stressful, especially for kids who are starting school for the first time or starting in a new school. Whether kids are moving up a grade or starting a new school, it means meeting new teachers, facing new academic demands and entering a new social circle, so it can create anxiety for the children as well as their parents. The following tips will help make preparing for the new school year less strenuous and more exciting. Get Familiar with the School
If your child went to the same school last year, you may only need to ask about the differences from last year. For example, does school start the same time as last year or are there any changes in the bus schedules. If your child is starting a new school, you should visit the school several times beforehand and attend the orientation or open house. A few weeks before the first day of school try to find out as much information as possible, such as:
- What the daily schedule will be
- What time school begins and ends
- Is a sack lunch and snack required or are meals are provided. If purchased meals are optional, how much are they?
Summer is here, and kids love spending time in the sunshine outdoors. While summer is associated with carefree days and freedom, it is important for parents to remember that there are some risks that accompany those beautiful days outside. As the temperatures begin to rise, you can use these strategies to keep your kids safe.
1. Stay Hydrated
The combination of high temperatures and increased physical activity make dehydration a serious threat to a child’s health. Make sure your child carries water with them as they participate in recreational activities, and encourage frequent hydration breaks. At home, serve water-filled foods such as watermelon and cucumbers along with an occasional frozen fruit bar to keep your kids cool.
2. Explore New Territory Together
Many childhood injuries occur when a kid ventures into dangerous areas outdoors. When visiting a new playground or recreational area, spend a few minutes touring the space to identify potential hazards such as broken glass. If you notice broken equipment or other hazards such as a wasp nest, then report it to the proper authorities. Additionally, check any signs that are posted to ensure your child falls within the recommended age guidelines for any play structures.
Reading is a skill that will take your kid wherever they want to go in life, and providing your kid with a wide range of books written for their age level is the best way to stimulate an interest in literacy. Yet, it can be hard to know where to start with picking out the right book when there are so many from which to choose. As you stock your child’s library, use these titles as inspiration to find the perfect age-appropriate books to enjoy as a family.
While schools across the country may close for summer vacation, there’s no reason that learning should stop. Do you want to keep your child’s mind active and their learning skills sharp? It’s easy to do. There are plenty of activities that are both fun and educational.
Hit the Stores
Whether it’s at a souvenir shop while you’re on vacation or the grocery store while you’re picking up a few necessities, a shopping trip offers countless opportunities for children of all ages to hone their skills. Younger children can practice colors, shapes or directional words as they help you hunt for the items that you need on the shelves of the stores. Older children can work on math skills by helping you determine the best buy or keeping a tally of prices.
Are your kids pizza fanatics? Do they scream for ice cream cake? Learning to fix their own versions at home is a great way to practice following directions, and dealing with the necessary measuring keeps their math skills fresh. Food can also be a great way to explore different cultures or time periods. Recipes of varying complexity are readily available on the internet, and selecting the one you’d like to experiment with can be part of the fun.
Getting a child to go to sleep at night can be one of the most frustrating parts of parenting. Setting up a bedtime routine that is consistently followed will help your children know what to expect each night, helping them to get the sleep they need for their growing bodies and easing your stress and frustration.
1. Set an Appropriate Bedtime for Your Child
Often parents let a child stay up later because he or she doesn’t seem tired. Once a child is over-tired, however, the body releases cortisol. This hormone can make it more difficult for your child to fall asleep and increase the likelihood of him or her waking up during the night and early in the morning. Sleep experts say that children need to following amounts of sleep as they age:
- Children ages one to three need 12 to 14 hours of sleep each day.
- Children ages three to six need 10 to 12 hours of sleep each day.
- Children ages seven to 12 need 10 to 11 hours of sleep each night.
- Teenagers ages 13 to 18 need eight to nine hours of sleep each night.
Use your child’s age and nap schedule as a guideline to adjust their bedtime accordingly.
A new sibling can evoke feelings of happiness, confusion, jealousy and excitement in your other children. Depending on their age and maturity levels, there are different ways to approach the topic. Having the patience and making the effort to help your children adjust to the transition will make for a happier home and family.
Don’t Tell Younger Children Too Early
Children who are pre-school age and younger may have difficulty grasping the concept of time. Telling them too far in advance of the due date will be confusing. Wait until the due date is closer to tell them. Children in elementary school have a better idea of time, so it’s okay to tell them once you are out of the first trimester.
Involve Them in Preparations
Buying a new car seat, having a baby shower or preparing a room are all exciting preparations for your new child. Get other children in on the excitement by letting them be involved in the preparations. Allowing them to choose an outfit or toy may help increase their excitement.
Stick to Routines
Many children feel jealous or scared because a new sibling can interrupt their own routine. Stick to the same routine as much as possible by being organized. Find someone to care for your children while you are in the hospital, organize rides so after-school activities can still be attended, make sure favorite snacks are in the cupboard and ensure babysitters stick to your regular schedule.
Having a baby can be a very rewarding experience. However, it also comes with its own set of unique challenges. Many mothers who are prepared to deliver the baby, often are unprepared when it actually arrives. This is often due to lack of information or misinformation from the sources around them. There are many key things to keep in mind when having a baby, and preparation has to start right at the beginning in order to ensure proper care. Luckily, there are many ways to do this and none set in stone. Caring for your child is ultimately up to how much research and preparation you are willing to put in.
The basic necessities should be a primary focus. Many people set up special rooms for their newborns not only to provide them enough space and comfort but also to create a bit of sound cushioning, due to the fact that newborns are notorious for breaking the sound barrier. Often, this room will also be used for storing toys and other necessary items. Many parents also choose to construct a crib for their newborn. It is important to choose a crib that is a good fit for a new child.
One of the other important facets of preparing for a new baby is nutrition. Many mothers grapple with the decision to breastfeed or use formula. There have been many studies on this subject and it would benefit the entire family greatly if the mother or father did research beforehand. Keeping your child’s nutrition in mind is just as important as providing a safe, comfortable living space. If you are someone who is expecting their first child or even another addition to the family, preparation can seem like a monumental task. All of the work and effort that is put in by the parents will pay off in time and there is nothing quite like seeing a child grow up to become a great adult. With a little bit of research, any parent can be prepared to welcome a new bundle of joy home.
Wondering what you should buy for your children during the holiday season? If they already have several electronics and other items they want, you may not know what to get for them. There are several great gifts that are suitable for children of nearly any age, whether you have toddlers or teenagers. Continue reading
If you have a baby, then you know just how quickly those cuties can grow. This can be an exciting time, but finding new clothes for your kiddo every few months can be a financially exhausting endeavor. The good news is that there are ways to dress your child throughout their younger years that won’t break the bank.
Gently Used Clothing
If you know any other parents, then it might be a worthwhile idea to host a clothing swap. These fun events give parents an opportunity to get rid of the clothing that their children have outgrown in exchange for ones that will actually fit them. This is a great way to get rid of clutter, help out other parents in the community and, of course, obtain new clothing for your child at no price!
If you have any thrift stores in your area, they would be worth looking into. Thrift stores often have baby clothing available, and usually at very reasonable prices. Although thrift stores tend to be donation only, if you find a second-hand store that specializes in baby clothing, it is very possible they would be willing to pay to take your gently used baby clothing off your hands. Continue reading