Back to School!
Back to School!
Each new school year brings a mix of opportunities, excitement and struggles for our children. In the mad rush to make sure supplies are bought, clothes are ready, and lunches are planned, it’s easy to forget that our little ones may be hiding nervousness about their new educational adventure.
From preschool to high school, the first day of school can bring a mix of emotions to children. The issues are, of course, different depending on their ages, but we can offer support and help to our children throughout their educational experience.
Talking with them about what to expect in their new classroom (or at their new school) can help to lessen their fears and build excitement. Some ideas for helping them look forward to the new school year include:
- Visiting their school to see the building, playground(s), etc. Even if you cannot go inside the building, a visit can help them become familiar with the location and removes the fear of the unknown.
- Drawing pictures together of what they think they’ll see and do on their first day
- Talking about their favorite parts of the last school year (or for first year students, experiences they’ve had in library programs or other classes they’ve attended)
- Share your experiences: tell them stories about your first days of school, new friends you met, and some of the funny things you remember from each new school you attended.
Older students may just want to hear that you have been through a similar experience, and that you were nervous about it too. Even if they appear not to be listening, it is worth sharing your thoughts with them.
Below is a list of helpful back-to-school books to share with your child.
The Middle School Survival Guide by Arlene Erlbach
My First Day at a New School by Charlotte Guillain
It’s Back to School We Go: First Day Stories From Around the World by Ellen Jackson
Off to Kindergarten by Tony Johnston
School’s First Day of School by Adam Rex
First Day of School by Anne F. Rockwell
Manners at School by Siân Smith
A Smart Girl’s Guide to Starting Middle School by Julie Williams
This School Year Will Be the Best! by Kay Winters