It’s that time of year again! Going back to school can be both exciting and a bit scary for not only children with special needs, but for all children (for some teachers and parents too!). At Speech Start we have found a few techniques that help make the transition a bit easier. We hope they are helpful to you!
Talk About the Transition
For some children the shift between staying at home and playing to a new environment and more structured routine can cause anxiety, fear, and may lead to behaviors. Talking about the transition can help prepare your child for the upcoming changes in their daily routine. Discuss the new activities and things they will learn in a positive and exciting way. Making your own story book or story board can also help.
Some parents have toured a new school or met with the teacher prior to the start of the school year. This helps the child become familiar with their new teacher and environment. It also gives the parent the opportunity to ask questions about the classroom routine and schedule. This information can then be previewed at home with the child in preparation for the transition.
Get a Head Start
Start preparing for the new routine two weeks before the start of the new school year. Set up a new bed time and stick with it as well as an earlier wake up time. This will help get you and your child on a new schedule. Adding a few more structured activities in the day can help prepare your child for the new school day routine.
Take Your Time Preparing and Don’t Stress!
Gather all of your paper work and make copies of the IEP. Children pick up on stress so take your time organizing and preparing. It really can help make the transition easier for everyone in your family.
It’s the Big Day!
It may take a week or two for you and your child to adjust to the new routine. Ask questions and review the days happenings when your child comes home. Remember to be excited and positive! Be prepared, be calm, and be ready for a school year full of fun!