It’s That Time Of Year Again!
August 31, 2010 · Posted in Discipline, Education, K-5 Kids, Media, Parenting, Preschoolers · Permalink

As August light fades and the end of summer coolness sets in, we all, no matter how old, still get that back to school feeling.  The combination of sadness at the summer slipping away mixes with the anxiety tinged excitement at the thought of a whole new year. Remember that great feeling of a new back pack, lunch boxes, and pencils? It’s time for a fresh start!

To capitalize on this feeling have one or two family meetings before school starts. Get a big calendar to go over the general schedule. Who has what when. Visual reminders are helpful for childrenKids like to see things concretely and it helps them organize in their mind to see it on paper.

Make a list of what needs to happen in the mornings before school and before bed. You can use words or pictures depending on the age of your children. Kids love lists and charts!

It is also a good time to go over any chores you want the kids to have and put it on a chore list.

This is an important time to reiterate rules about behavior. Get your kids involved by thinking about their goals for the year. What do they want to work on?

This is the perfect time to make new paramaters about “screen- time”.  TV, computer, PSP, vand the Wii are all the same activity, besides using the computer for homework. If your kids are moving into school age many families make rules about no screens in the morning, or only after all homework is done, or only computer during the week and TV and video games on the weekend. Think about what works for your family and then tell the kids the new rules at the family meeting.  “Screen-time” is also a priviledge that can be revoked as a consequence for negative behaviors.

Adults also need limits on screen-time. Many families have instituted a “no screen zone” from say 6 PM-bedtime for EVERY member of the family! No email checking and Blackberry texting.

You can also set goals for the year–ask your children what they want this new year to be like–what would they like to add or subtract. Set goals for yourselves as well – less yelling, more individual time with each child, making evening family time a priority.

Again, the back to school month of September is a great time to rededicate yourselves as a family to the coming year with goals and rules and an empowered start to a new year!

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  1. Liz
    September 2nd, 2009 | 4:00 pm

    I love the idea of a no screen zone for the entire family. I have always been fairy strict with the amount of tv my children watch but need to keep myself accountable as well – no iphone or emails during precious family time.

  2. Elissa
    September 16th, 2009 | 3:46 pm

    I find that back to school time helps ME get clear on goals for the year!

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