Back to School Tips for Students and Parents

Ten things to consider for the new school year; Schools open Tuesday, September 5

Baltimore County Public Schools re-open for the 2017-2018 school year on Tuesday, September 5. As families finalize summer activities, consider these tips for a smoother transition into the school year.

1. Daily Devotional/Meditation— Prepare yourself before you rush into the day to meet the demands that your family, employers and clients place upon you physically, mentally, financially, emotionally and spiritually. Wake up 30 minutes earlier to focus. Read a daily devotional or personal affirmations. A few recommendations are: Grace for the Moment by Max Lucado, Day By Day with James Allen by Vic Johnson, Prayers that Avail Much by Germaine Copeland, The Holy Bible, The Qur’an or your book of practicing doctrine.

2. Morning exercise stimulates mental acuity— Several studies conducted in the United States suggests a myriad of benefits for students (and adults) who exercise in the morning resulting in better academic performance, an increase in concentration and energy levels. Other countries have adopted the exercise regime and it has proved to be highly successful.

3. Organize

A. Meals- Pack everyone’s lunch the night before. Prepare dinner in a slow cooker. On school nights, don’t adopt the title of “short order chef.” Plan and shop in advance while following a family menu (whenever possible). Healthy and nutritious meals will keep your family operating at peak performance.

B. Laundry— After clothes are dried, fold and put them on hangers and place them in the drawers or in the closet. Identify and iron clothes the night before. Looking for socks and underwear in the morning will impede morning progress.

C. School supplies – Attend an “Annual Back to School Drive” hosted by organizations in the community to supplement your school supplies list. Purchase supplies in advance while anticipating items for science projects.

4. Wellness and Physical Check-ups – Before the first day of school have your child boost his/her immune systems with nutritional supplements, at minimum vitamin C. Consult with your primary care physician to address each person’s health concerns.

5. Talk positive with your child/children - Leading up to the first day of school there will be an increase level of anxiety, excitement and “butterflies.” Positive self-talk about the new school, experiences, meeting new friends and seeing the old ones will put them at ease. Continue the communication throughout the school year. Giving each child their one-on-one time is essential in building their self-esteem and managing behavioral concerns and social issues.

6. Homework/School Projects- Identify a well-lighted area in your home to complete assignments and special projects or go to the library.

7. Plan car maintenance – Maintain the fluids in your car. Fill up the gas tank the night before so that you’re ready for the morning commute.

8. Connect with teachers – Develop good communication (face-to-face, phone, email) with your child/children’s teachers to enhance the learning experience and to share any concerns. When discussing your child’s academic performance avoid communicating with teachers and administrators on any social media platform including, Facebook, Twitter, Oovoo or Facetime. Arrange a “surprise” visit to the school. Be an active part of the school’s PTA by attending the meetings. Students whose parents are actively involved with their child’s/children’s education creates an “it takes a village” relationship.

9. Stay engaged– Stay engaged with the educational process, school activities and fundraising events throughout the school year and plan accordingly.

10. Social media vigilance – Parents should be vigilant of their child’s/children’s activity on their mobile devices and “follow” them too. Parents are encouraged to set up an account and monitor for predators, cyberbullies and their child’s activity too.