So you've been staring at each other everyday for the last few months. The countdown to the first day of school is on and you may be struggling between one of two things. A) You're pretty much bored out of your own mind and are sick and tired of trying to come up with new novel things to do. B) There's still so much left TO DO in the summer! Pools to visit! Rocks to climb! Fun to be had! Summer don't end! No matter which category you fall into (or if you have your very own category) there is still plenty of fun to be had and time to spend with one another before school is back in session and you're onto a whole new set of daily struggles.
First of all, chill out. What have you done this summer? What did your kids enjoy the most? What would they do again if they could and what would they rather avoid forever? Sometimes I am guilty of thinking I need to be coming up with new and spectacular ideas to keep my kids entertained when in reality all they want is a sprinkler set up and a few snacks out on the lawn. While a schedule is good for any kid, sometimes we let schedules slide in summer. Now is the time to get one back in place, perhaps one that includes a bit of schoolwork each day and a slightly earlier bedtime each week as you get closer and closer to the first day. Going from fun! fun! fun! carefree! to schedules and school buses overnight can be a shock for kids (and parents.)
One thing we've started doing is organizing clothes for the week, it's something Addie does every week during school and something she's fallen out of the habit of over summer. She is responsible for picking outfits for each day of the week so she knows she has clean socks, underwear and proper clothes for each day. She's also back in the habit of reading regularly and going to bed just a little bit earlier. While the first day of school is exciting, it can be a drag to go from total freedom to strict schedule.
We still have plenty of parks to visit, plenty of pools to swim in and lots of sprinklers to run through, but summer 2012 is coming to an end for Addie (First day? August 1st! Crazy right?) and to make it easier on all of us we're planning now for the transition to keep the grumps at bay later on.
How do you plan on helping your kids transition from summer to school?