Back to school, part 3

        Itís time to get ready to return to school. Next week, the lives of your family members will change drastically. A little preparation among the members of the family can help to make the transition smooth.

Procedure for papers into and out of the house

        Designate a place for all children to put papers that parents have to see. It can be a folder, box, or basket. Parents train their children that they will look only in this one spot -- no rifling through backpacks or looking under beds!

        Then, each child has a folder, also in a designated place, where the parent places the signed papers and permission slips. Itís the childís responsibility to check the folder for papers returned to it.

Procedures for homework and study

        The most common advice is that children should have a quiet place, away from the hubbub of family life, in order to do their assignments. But this may not be the best solution for children who may not have had free time in their own home, in their room, or with their parents. This time is important to children and it gives them a sense of wellbeing and comfort.

        Furthermore, it is very likely that he is going to want nothing more than to be near a caring parent - probably mom - during the time he gets home from school. Sending him to his room to do his homework by himself may be construed as a punishment.

        Parents need to recognize and provide for this. The best way to be sure that homework is completed is by providing an area that has all the paper, pencils, erasers, crayons, rulers, and other supplies needed to complete homework. But instead of having this in childrenís bedrooms, or in a playroom located in another part of the house, consider placing this in the dining room or kitchen, close to the parent who is preparing the familyís dinner.

        Your child - or several children, as the case may be - may take an hour to complete a ten-minute assignment. But the socialization with siblings and parents is a necessary part of his day.


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