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7 Fun, Smart Ways to Prepare Older Siblings for Back to School
It’s hard to believe that it’s already time to send the kiddos back to school! The summer feels as if it flew by, especially since I had my baby just as summer was beginning. This fall is going to be an exciting time as two of my daughters will be going back to school, including a kindergartener! For the past few months, majority of the attention has been on my newborn, Amani. With school starting again, it’s time to shift the focus back onto the older girls and getting ready for school. This will be my first time with a newborn at the start of the school year, but I think with the following tips, the whole family will be ready and happy at the start of school.
Cut the clutter, not class! The best way to start the school year is by getting rid of any excess clutter. Outgrown clothes, broken toys, and last year’s school papers should be gone before the start of school. This will give your kiddos (and you!) a fresh slate to start the year organized with a clean, clutter free space.
School Supply Shopping Date. Keep Baby at home with the sitter while you take older siblings out shopping for their school supplies. This will put the focus on them and picking out their favorite supplies without the rush of finishing quickly because the baby needs a changing, feeding, nap… or all of the above! Bonus points for an ice cream pit stop on the way home.
What’s on the Menu? Take the guesswork out of what to pack for their lunches by sitting down with them and making a list of what they’d like. This will help you prepare in advance by having all of their favorite foods on hand, ready to be packed into their lunchboxes.
Party With Class. Perhaps your older kids felt left out during Baby’s baby shower. Give them a chance to party with their friends to celebrate going back to school. Serve fun school themed snacks and treats. Decorate with paper chains and festive buntings that can stay up during the first couple of weeks to keep the excitement alive. Send their friends home with party favors that will also check off a needed school supply, like a box of tissues or pack of pencils.
Back to School Dinner. Get the kiddos dressed up nicely and then treat them to a nice dinner out to their restaurant of choice. Again, leave the baby at home with the sitter. Discuss their goals and hopes for the upcoming school year. This will be a great time to reconnect with your kids and get them excited about starting school again.
School Pictures. It’s likely that you’ve been snap happy when it comes to your newborn. How can anyone resist taking hundreds of photos of the newest addition? Turn the camera onto your older kids to show them they’re just as frame worthy. Have a photo shoot with them sporting their new school clothes. Don’t forget the ever important “First Day of School” pictures!
Teacher’s Pet. Make an extra effort to reach out to your child’s teacher. Let the teacher know that even though you have a baby, you’re still available to be there for her and your student. Give the teacher the heads up that you’d like to help her and the class in ways that won’t compete with Baby’s time. Preparing cut-outs, stapling packets, or picking up books from the library are all easy ways to lend a hand without stepping foot in the class.
How are you preparing older siblings for back to school?