buying our children new school supplies may help tip the scale
towards eager anticipation, it’s much more important
to help children to prepare for their school year by making
sure they’re well rested. Parents can help their children
get off to a good start by readjusting their sleep schedule
before school begins.
the first few weeks of school are exciting, they are also
stressful as your child adjusts to new experiences, people
and classes. Being well rested can help children make the
transition, cutting down on some of the stress and ensuring
that they are ready to face the challenges, to focus and to
the long summer break many children have gotten used to sleeping
in simply "because it's vacation." Family trips
and summer activities often throw off the schedules of even
the most diligent parents. Children may have gotten into the
pattern of staying up late and sleeping late. If this problem
isn't corrected before school starts, children are likely
to struggle as they adjust to an earlier schedule.
can help re-set their children's internal clocks and correct
this problem so they're ready for school. I suggest that for
a week before school starts, you move up bedtime by 15-30
minutes. But simply having children go to sleep earlier won't
solve the problem as long as they are still getting up late.
Most importantly, parents need to consistently wake their
children up earlier. To motivate your children to get out
of bed, it often helps if you create a reason for them to
have to get up in the morning. It would be ideal to have them
spend time outdoors; the early morning sunshine helps to reset
the internal clock. The first week that you wake your children
up earlier can cause them to be tired and sleep deprived;
however, if you continue to firmly enforce the wake-up time,
your child should begin to naturally fall asleep earlier.
By beginning this process a week before school starts children
will have the advantage of being well rested and ready to
learn—starting with the very first day of school.
children have trouble getting out of bed on their own in the
morning, are grouchy, and/or have irritable or moody behavior
during the day, it's very likely that they need more sleep.
Insufficient sleep affects mood, immunity and the ability
to learn. Ideally, children should consistently go to bed
at the same time every night. Even on the weekends, bedtime
should not vary by more than
one hour a night or a total of two hours for the entire weekend.
If it does,
you're setting your child up for a kind of jet lag when Monday
addition, here are some sleep prep tips that may help with
back to school transition:
time for a leisurely bedtime routine
Have a consistent bedtime.
Warn your children five to ten minutes before they need
to get ready
for bed so they can wrap up what they're doing.
Have quiet activities before bed. (Limit television, video
Avoid caffeinated drinks in the late afternoon and evening.
Teach your children relaxation techniques to help them relax
the author: Dubbed “The Dream Maker”
by People magazine, Patti Teel is a former teacher and the
author of The
Floppy Sleepy Game Book,
which gives parents techniques to help their children relax,
deal with stress, or fall asleep. Visit Patti online at www.pattiteel.com
to subscribe to her free newsletter.