Off to school, there he/she goes with a huge bag full of books on his/her way to highschool. You asked if you had to come with him/her because it’s the first day. “No way mom, I’m big now” your kid replied. You can hardly believe your kid doesn’t need you anymore and that he/she grows up sof ast. You wonder how it will go, will there ben ice teachers, fun friends, how about homework? You have so many questions just like your kid.
How can you prepare your kid for secondary education?
It gives kids a lot of peace of mind to have all their school supplies ready. Make sure they have all school books, an agenda, a pencil case full with pencils and lots of coloured pens. Also a notebook to make notes is always handy and is a must in every school bag. Will your kid use any electronic device? Make sure you teach him/her to charge the device.
How about the route to school. Will your kid go on his/her own by bus, by bike on foot? Make sure to do a test round and point out the dangerous points on this route (if any). Remember how your first day at school was, share your experience. Explain how things work in general in secondary schools and that they get a new teacher for every subject. Prepare your kid as good as possible.
Every kid needs you as a parent especially on new school. It is a misconception that your kid is old enough to sort things out for themselves. They make this impression of course, but believe a teacher of 21 years that they really need you as a parent more than ever!
Most kids have lots of difficulty in adjusting to a new school and a new life. They have to start planning things ahead, they have to adjust to new subjects, homework, new classmates, many teachers and many stimulus.
To make a planning visable is a good one to practice. New members can get a special WordJo planner with every week a nice learning tip and enough room to make notes and appointments for a whole week. Hang it up so your kid and the family can see.
After primary school it’s important to teach your kid independance. This is quite an issue for some kids and parents but very necessary. It’s important in this to ask for “open questions”. Ask questions like:
Why is this important? Kids who can think for themselves, will become better adults.
I had 16 year old students of which their mom made their sandwiches and packed their bags. This is all very sweet but not very wise in training your kids to become self sufficient adults.
Make sure you have a routine the night before to pack the bag together with your kid, discuss the day ahead and make sure your kid will have their lunch ready for the next day. Be a supervisor in this ritual not the performer. This will teach your kid to think for himself, don’t we all love this?
Tip: set a standard alarmclock on your phone at 8 pm to execute this routine..
Did you know that a teenager needs at least 10 hours of sleep each day?
Here are some bedtime directions:
11-12 years old between 8.30 pm and 9 pm
12-13 years old between 9 pm and 9.30 pm
Rested kids are able to learn, tired kids just hang around.
As a teacher I saw many (often way too) tired kids in my classroom. They were sitting there in vain because their brains were too tired to pick up any information. I also saw many kids who have a chronic sleep disorder.
Did you know that your kid can drop a school level cause of lack of sleep?
Conflicts? Fights? Motivation problems? Underachievement? Some kids even feel “down” and depressed all because of lack of sleep.
Make sure your kid will get enough sleep!
Trust but verify