Don’t Let the End of Summer Get You Down: 5 Ways to Make Going Back to School FunAug 27th, 2011 | By Jessica Parnell | Category: General Homeschool Posts
Top 5 list: How to make ‘starting to home school fun’.
Is it possible to make going back to school actually….fun? It turns out you can. Don’t let the first day of school this September turn tedious; instead, help make the transition back into the classroom this fall an enjoyable experience. Here are five great ways to make going back to school fun.
Nothing can take kids’ minds off their pending return to the classroom more than shopping, even when they’re shopping for school supplies! Pencils, erasers, notebooks, binders, you name it…it’s exciting for them to make their own choices, and you should encourage your child to be creative.
2. Slowly Transition Away from Outdoor Time
Summer means outdoors, so get a head start a week or two before school starts to replace outdoor activities with indoor pursuits. Don’t make Day One of school the end of outdoor fun, however. September weather can still be enjoyable, and allowing a slow transition back indoors helps keep your children on an even keel. As long as they are still having fun, school doesn’t seem so bad…so continue to give them outdoor time during the last of summer’s bright, sunny days to make the transition easier.
3. Make Day One Fun
Most in-school students spend Day One getting re-oriented to school, and there’s no reason homeschool parent-teachers can’t do the same thing. It’s a good day to review the curriculum, let your child talk about concerns and expectations, and share funny stories. It’s okay to give them a bit of a break on the first day, and maybe spend some time relating some of summer’s highlights to subjects your child will be studying this fall. Just remember, they’re trying to adjust to a radical lifestyle change, so easing them slowly into coursework can make schoolwork feel less unpleasant. If you’re worried about a slow start, just remember: traditional school students are going to spend as much as two months reviewing last year’s material!
4. The Big Classroom Surprise
I know…I know…two weeks ago I was encouraging you parents to have your kids help set up the classroom as a way to get them back into school-mode. But if they aren’t interested or the timing doesn’t work out, use the opportunity to create a fun back-to-school surprise. If you’re able, lock up the “schoolhouse” until the first day of classes. Quietly redecorate and rearrange the classroom. The changes in their learning environment will be fun for them and serve as another good lesson in adapting to changing environments.
5. Make It A Special Day
Sure, every day in school should be special. But since Day One brings anxieties and unhappiness at the passing of summer, make the day a little extra special. Taking pictures and dressing up (both parent-teacher and student) can turn a traumatic day into something out of the ordinary. It’s hard to compete with vacations and summer fun, so celebrating that first day back (cupcakes, anyone?) will help ease the move back to class.
As the teacher, making the return to school fun rests heavily on you. Your attitude is infectious…so make sure you give your kids positive energy, excitement and fun. Remember, there’ll be plenty of time for complaining throughout the school year…there always is! In the meantime, use these ideas to keep your child’s back-to-school irritability at bay for as long as possible as they transition back into a learning environment.
How do you get your children motivated for school?
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