By Janice Villanueva
It has been an absolutely awesome summer! Not only have the kids been enjoying their summer activities, they’ve managed to squeeze in some “work,” too. Reese’s slime business, which she runs with two of her best friends, is doing quite well. And Coby and Zach punched in some solid work experience by being able assistants in one of our big events. All these activities have helped to build their character and work ethic. But pretty soon, their routine and their schedule will become more regular as the school bell rings.
Some parents, specially those who have only been sending their kids to school for a few years, may naturally approach the coming of the new academic year with much trepidation. As I’ve been doing the ring in the new school year bit for quite some time now, let me share with you some of the things we do at home so that the kids may start strong in school.
GEAR UP! Your kids are bound to have lists and lists of stuff they need to bring to school. Ask them to join you when you go school supply shopping, from notebooks and pencils to uniforms, shoes, bags, and lunchboxes. In this way, they’ll get excited about all the shiny new things they’ll be using in school. Get them involved in wrapping their books and printing name labels. Let them personalize their tags whenever possible.
GET THEM TO BED ON TIME! Your kids are likely to have been sleeping in for the past few weeks. They may have been sleeping late, joining you in your movie marathons, and waking up late in the day, too. We do that, too! So at least a week or so before school starts, I get them to bed just as they would on school days. Adjusting their body clock early on would give them enough time to adapt to their school hours.
OPEN ATM ACCOUNTS FOR THEIR ALLOWANCE TO BE REMITTED ONLINE. One other aspect where children can start strong in life is the financial. Teaching children how to properly manage their money will certainly equip them for a better, brighter future. When Reese came of age, we went to the bank together so she can open her own account. I asked her to fill up her form, and encouraged her to ask the bank manager questions. The sooner our children are introduced into the “real world,” the better they will be prepared when they eventually join it.
BRING THEM TO SCHOOL ORIENTATION. The school usually schedules an orientation meeting for parents. As much as possible, I bring the kids with me as well so that they are advised of the rules and regulations of the school. I also schedule a meeting with their class adviser so that there are no surprises for them come school time.
BE AVAILABLE FOR THEM. On the last few days of vacation, I try to be at home as much as possible. I want to savor my time with them as much as possible because pretty soon, they’ll be busy with homework and friends and school projects. By spending time with them, I also get a sense of how they are feeling about the new school year. If they are anxious or unsure of what the new school year brings, I can help them manage those issues, so that they can start strong.
ASK THEM TO MAKE A BAON LIST. It’s always a challenge for parents to make baon that kids would actually eat. I take the guesswork out of this dilemma by asking them what they actually like. I then check if the baon they like are healthy and well balanced, and plot out the menu to guide our cook. Of course, I complement their baon with the nutritious goodness of Mott’s 100% Apple Juice. The #1 branded apple juice in the United States, it’s 100% real fruit goodness with Vitamin C added, too. We usually have Mott’s for breakfast and every time we need a refreshing drink throughout the day. The kids also take them to school as Mott’s comes in a convenient can.