Help smooth the transition to back-to-school with routines

(Photos: Wikimedia Commons)

(WRIC) — Getting kids ready and out the door for school on time can be chaotic for families, especially during the first week of classes.

Luckily, 8News reporter Sydney Cameron has some simple tips on how to help make it easier for everyone. There’s one major thing to help guarantee success: having a routine ready for going back-to-school.

Every morning, Dawn Kulynych starts the school day the same way: fixing breakfast for her three grandkids, Danny, Kennedy and Charlie, before sending them upstairs to brush their teeth and get dressed.

“I’m usually up by 4:30,” Kulynych says.

Meanwhile, Dawn’s already made their lunches and is ready to play hairdresser.

“You need to be ready before they can get ready.”

A full hour before the bus comes to pick them up for the first week of school, everyone in Kulynych’s home is relaxed and ready. But don’t be fooled — it takes some preparation for her house to run like a well-oiled machine.

“The Thursday or Friday before school started, we started a little earlier, weaning them in, so by this week they were ready by 8 p.m. to go to bed.”

Dr. Gray Snowden with Capitol Pediatrics says it’s vital to get kids back on a school sleep schedule about a week before classes to ensure kids’ emotional, physical and mental well-being during school.

“When you go back to school, it’s kind of like being jet-lagged,” Dr. Snowden says. “You want to start getting more into the swing of things and that goes along with getting them up at a reasonable time, you know, getting the breakfast in, getting more on a regular meal schedule.”

It’s also vital to talk with your child about the upcoming year and map out a morning-school routine.

From raising her kids and grandkids, Dawn knows, it goes a long way to a stress-free morning.

“Children know what to expect they’ll go right along with you, I’m telling you,” Kulynych says.

To help kids stay with morning routines throughout the year, it’s also helpful if parents establish school-day schedules for homework, TV time, baths and bedtime.

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