While “Auld Lang Sang” may be more associated with New Year Eve’s, back to school has it own “Auld Lang Sang” feeling too. We start the new school year with many resolutions for our children, family, and home life. Do you swear that this year everyone will be more organized, less rushed, more calm, more together regularly, etc? Like a gym come February, many of our school resolutions get lost once the school year gets into full swing. At the website Great schools.org, in the article “Start the School Year Right: Tips From Our Expert,” there are some fantastic tips to launch a good school year.
There are tips aimed at better communication and improved understanding within our home. The article discusses striving to really listen to our children (especially when they are being really open-bedtime, during a television show, after a shower, a car ride, etc) and focusing in on what our children are saying. We should strive for understanding and give short, concise advice or guidance, when needed. One way to do this is to get into a regular practice of talking or listening a few minutes each day, and take our conversations with our children as the little pearls that they are, for everyone’s benefit.
There are also tips for improving what I will call family sanity. -The top tip-not to get too overextended in extra activities, especially with young children. It just over taxes and stresses everyone out! Along these same lines, the article discusses scheduling time as a family to relax, be it through a movie night, game night, or commitment not to schedule anything extra , night. There are the miscellaneous tips aimed at improving academic success and surviving the wilderness of adolescence, for both parents and teens alike. When you have to be in the car for games, rehearsals, practices, etc, there are tips to make the best use of downtime to increase academic success.
Through fun games and educational games, vocabulary, math, geography, and you name it academically can be improved. The article looks at the special dynamics of the middle school and high school years. Typically, it is a time when parents become less engaged at school. The article heavily suggests finding ways to engage, be it through the PTA , education forums, or parent support groups. It discusses the careful dance of “negotiated freedom” for teens, via chances to prove themselves and committing to doing their part to uphold their responsibilities and place in family life.
There are some other great ideas here, too. What do you do to launch a successful school year? What helps you keep it going?