5 Ways to Get Back on a Schedule for Back to School
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The older grades all started last week for two days of school on Wednesday and Thursday and then got off for a four day holiday weekend. With Scarlet starting third grade a week before Des started kindergarten, it got our schedule WAY out of whack. Not only that, but we ended the summer with a big hurrah, just like last year’s nine day trip to Alaska. This year was nearly as action-packed! Instead of glaciers, we had the kids going to Cape Cod while we went to the comic convention.
Then I took the kids to New Jersey to see all their cousins and my parents. That was 48 hours of driving, raspberry picking, partying, running around, and going to a fair. Two days after we got home, they went to Grandma’s house for two nights. Then they came back for one night before Scarlet went camping with her best friend’s family. Insanity! I tell you this only to tell you JUST how off schedule we got, and right before school too! Scarlet came back on Sunday morning, and then we had two days to prepare for the first day of school. And then, another crazy fun summer weekend, if you can believe that!
Although I have no regrets of such a fun August, it’s time to get BACK ON SCHEDULE for back to school! Are we up to the task? We are! Scarlet is making big changes, because third grade seems like a pretty big kid grade, right? And Des was nervous/excited for kindergarten, and I was too! (for him and for me) Then there’s me. I started new work the day Des started kindergarten. We are all getting back on schedule together! And I’m looking to feel/look my very best to start!
You know we’re a Tom’s of Maine family, right? Both kids use Tom’s of Maine® Silly Strawberry™ Toothpaste, and Cassidy and I use Tom’s of Maine® Luminous White™ Toothpaste Spearmint because I LOVE spearmint. It both calms me and energizes me, and you need both of those qualities in a toothpaste – considering that we brush our teeth at least twice a day. Why am I telling you this? It’s because it fits right into our recent theme of transitioning from summer to school modes. Feel ready?
Tip 1 – Stock up on what your kids need, and what YOU need, plus some extras. There’s nothing like all that newness in the house. New notebooks, new crayons, new clothes, and new personal care items. This is super helpful in making the mental and emotional transition to back-to-school time. It’s ok when shopping to let your kids make at least some of their own choices, within reason. For Scarlet, that was fun, doughnut-shaped erasers. It helps them start the year off on the right foot too! And, of course, don’t forget what YOU need. For me, I got Tom’s of Maine® Luminous White™ Toothpaste Spearmint!
Why? Luminous White™ is Tom’s of Maine’s® most advanced whitening toothpaste ever. You can get whiter teeth in two weeks – *by removing surface stains vs. regular fluoride toothpaste. It’s safe on enamel, safe for everyday use, and made up of biodegradable or mineral-derived ingredients. Also, you can feel GOOD about it. All of their natural personal care and oral care products are made with no artificial colors, flavors, fragrances or preservatives, nor are they tested on animals. All Tom’s of Maine packaging is recyclable through TerraCycle®. Visit www.tomsofmaine.com/terracycle to learn how.
Tip 2 – Adjust your child’s bedtime. Better yet, adjust your family’s bedtimes. We’ve been too relaxed with our bedtimes this summer, but that’s sort of what summer is all about. Getting up earlier can be a real shock to the system and if you all haven’t gotten more sleep, that probably won’t go well at school and/or work! The week before school starts, it’s best to move their bedtime closer and closer to their school bedtime, from their summer bedtime. Then two nights before school, start the school bedtime. That said, if that time has passed, it’s not too late to move gradually to your new bedtime goals.
Tip 3 – Adjust your family morning routine. This is another one like bedtime – maybe you didn’t get ready in time for back to school, but you can still make those gradual changes NOW! Changing the morning schedule little by little helps ease the transition. I always find that by at least October, or even earlier, we have all fallen slowly into a new rhythm together – carefully and gently. It’s less of a shock to the system. And we all move gradually together, instead of moving apart.
Tip 4 – Set up a designated and comfortable place(s) for study. I’ll have two in elementary school this year, and even though kindergarten doesn’t have homework in our school, Des des like to independently study. I make sure both kids have clean, well-lit, comfortable places for homework and work – with supplies on hand – so they don’t waste time searching.
Tip 5 – Manage your age/grade differences, and use that to your advantage. Sounds puzzling, right? What I mean is that last year, I had two kids at two different schools. This year, they’re in the same school – but with vastly different schedules, bedtimes, etc. There are some fun ways I have coped/cope with this. For one thing, Des used to sit in the car with me while we waited for Scarlet’s school to let out. I began to pack a portable homework/study kid with basic supplies in a bag in the car. He loved to use this time to learn or get a jumpstart on any homework/work. Also, my kids have different bedtimes. I have Des (the younger child) choose his clothes for the next day, before taking a bath, brushing his teeth, and putting on his pajamas. He follows this specific routine every night, and it helps him transition into settling down at the end of the day.
Scarlet stays up later but follows a similar pattern of choosing her clothes, brushing her teeth, taking a bath, and then going to bed. It’s nice to get one-on-one time with them before bed, whenever possible. We’ll do a story or book and sometimes she’ll read on her own. Then. I do my own routine of picking out clothes, brushing my teeth, and winding down.
What is your favorite thing about Luminous White™? I have quite a few favorite things! Connect with Tom’s of Maine® on Twitter and Instagram and use the hashtag “#MyPearlyWhites”. Let them know what you love about their product.