This is a promotional post. Opinions are my own
The kids have been home a few months and school is starting! Be honest-have you kept the kids on their same bedtime routine and meal schedule all summer? If you have then you are the envy of so many parents. It is hard to keep them on track. We take vacations, have BBQ’s and they sometimes manage to crash midday from heat exhaustion keeping them up later. It is hot and falling asleep can be hard. There are so many factors that get in the way in the summer of keeping the kids on track.
As a Mom to 3 boys (2 of them step boys) that range in age from 7-23, I have had many years of Back to School! I keep a strict Back to School routine that starts 3 weeks out. Perhaps these tips will also help you see a smooth transition on day one when the kids mornings are thrown back to normal.
Re-nourish the brain
Unless you have sat the kids down several hours a day and pulled out math books, spelling words and science kits, your kids brains have been served much less then they were used to and will need to be used to again as they head back to that 6 1/2 hour day of learning. About 3 weeks before school start, I find 30 minutes in the morning and 1 hour in the afternoon for learning time. This can be educational computer programs that track progress and have core standards built in. It can also be workbooks for their grade level that cover multiple subjects.
They should have kept reading all summer-seriously, they should have been! So if not, that starts today and nightly! It is amazing how quickly those little brains take a step backwards when just reading alone stops. The weeks prior to school take 30 minutes on math and 1 hour on reading and writing daily. This brings back their confidence as well as exercises that all important learning muscle in those heads of theirs.
Nourish the body & brain
Did you know there are foods that are known to improve concentration? Actually, it is not the food but what those foods provide- omega-3 fatty acids. This little bit of nutrition helps maintain memory, focus and mood. Antioxidants also protect the brain from free radicals. Where do we find omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidant-rich foods? Eggs, oatmeal (steel cut is best), chunk light tuna, turkey, berries, dark chocolate, avocados, oranges, kale, grapes and the list goes on. Just avoid artificial sweeteners, white flour and sodium nitrate which is a preservative found in bacon, some lunch meats, smoked fish, hot dogs, beef jerky and salami. The side effect of sodium nitrate effect short term memory.
Get enough sleep
I begin about 2 weeks out if the last few weeks are hectic or about a week out if we are home and low activity during the days prior to school starting of getting the kids back to a normal bedtime. See the graphic below on some sleep tips.
Keep them moving
The best way to make sure the kids are getting enough exercise is to create a daily power hour. 10 minute breaks to run to the bathroom or up and down the stairs between TV and video games does not count. A power hour is high intensity and consistent play. Do you have a hard time getting the kids moving like this for long? I have a great solution! The LeapFrog LeapBand Activity Tracker. You can get one free the next time you head out to stock up on P&G products!
The LeapPad LeapBand Activity Tracker is very popular with the kids. The ages recommended are 4-7 and my 7 year old was jumping for joy when ours arrived. With this LeapBand kids can do challenges and earn gems for their ‘pets’ by doing activities requiring them to run, jump and play. Parents can link the band to their LeapFrog account and add activities and other features. On top of it all, it is a watch for those learning time.
How to get a FREE LeapPad LeapBand Activity Tracker
Shoppers who purchase $30 or more of P&G products at participating Allen Creek Thriftway, Mill Creek Central Market, and Petosa Family Grocer’s in the Pacific NW can get a free LeapPad LeapBand Activity Tracker 8/5-8/18 . Don’t live in the Pacific NW? You can find a participating retailer at pghopskipleap.com. Offer valid 07/01/15 – 09/30/15. Stores have their own promotional period so check your ads.
Want to win a P&G package that includes your own LeapFrog LeapBand? Enter below by completing one, some or all of the entry options. Open to US and ends on 8/20. Good luck!
Prize courtesy of P&G and shipped by Parenting Healthy. Winner will be emailed and MUST reply within 48 hours or a new winner will be chosen. Prize can be mailed to any Cont. US address and will ship via USPS.