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    How to Prepare Kids for the First Day of School: 6 Best Tips

    Preparing kids for the first day of school can be challenging as parents navigate setting early bedtimes, creating routines, and developing timely homework schedules. It can even become chaotic for some families, leading to additional stress and a more complex transition.

    Parents can make the process more streamlined for kids with the right strategies, allowing them to adjust to new environments and routines fully. 

    How Parents Can Help Prepare for the First Day of School

    Children walking together on First Day of School

    For some kids, starting school means that fun time is over. There is a lot of stress in preparing kids to create their routine again, with homework and sleeping early being key factors. You can help streamline their transition through a few simple strategies.

    1. Visiting School Early

    Parents can circle the school, schedule a class visit, and even make back-to-school shopping more fun for kids. Kids can feel more comfortable when they have already visited the school many times previously. Making the transition sooner can make it easier for many kids to adjust.

    2. Reassociating School With Fun

    Things like back-to-school crafts, learning activities, and science games can reconnect learning with fun. Kids won’t feel a sudden shift in their daily playtime routine and will become more active listeners when there’s an opportunity to learn something new. Parents can also write positive affirmations for kids that they can read during lunch.

    3. Strengthening Weaker Areas

    Kids can ease their anxiety about starting school by focusing on subjects that need more help. Areas such as geometry, nouns, US history, and world geography can be intimidating if your child doesn’t have an intuitive grasp of the subject yet.

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    4. Setting Goals

    Setting the right goals is another crucial step in the right direction. Kids thrive in a well-structured and development-focused environment, wherein goals are mutually discussed and developed for the year. Parents can also frame mini-goals, such as reading books 7 to 9 times a month or finishing homework before dinner each day.

    5. One-on-One Sessions

    One of the most critical strategies in easing nervousness in kids is to have daily one-on-one time with them. You can ask about school, new friends, and the new subjects they’ll learn. By making these sessions structured and stress-free, kids can share their thoughts and have parents resolve issues that may organically arise.

    6. Preparing for Hybrid Learning

    A significant area of anxiety for many kids is the transition to in-person classes if they have been used to online learning. This is especially true for kids who have joined new schools or who haven’t yet met their classmates in person. To ensure that their transition is more manageable, parents can organize after-school activities and playdates to create social bonds outside of school.

    What to Expect on the First Day of School?

    Children reading book together on First Day of School

    While the first day of school is a fun and exciting event, there is a lot of nervous energy that can present itself in bad behavior and acting out. It is essential to prepare for some of these things that can emerge as kids get used to new surroundings and new people.

    1. Children can feel stressed and anxious on their first day back. It is essential to reassure them that a school is a positive place full of opportunities and new friends.

    2. Your child can also feel neglected and left out after the first few days. It would help if you encouraged them to go outside their comfort zone and interact with people.

    3. Kids that are inherently opposed to interacting with teachers can feel further anxiety when asked to participate in reading aloud, presentations, and group activities. Having them practice these skills at home can help significantly.

    4. Kids can also feel anxious when it’s time to go to school in the mornings. Setting a calming morning routine, such as mindfulness activities or meditation for kids, can help immensely.

    5. Children can feel confused about what they’re learning if the pace of the class is too fast for them on the first day. Having them study the source material at home will help them adjust better.

    10 Fantastic First Day of School Messages for Kids!

    Teacher asking questions to class student raising hand on First Day of School

    Parents can leave these cute love-filled messages for their children to motivate them to try their best in every class.

    1. School is the first step to the life of your dreams. The more you put in, the more you get out of it!

    2. Your parents love you very much. Don’t be nervous or scared to speak up. Your teachers are there to help you learn.

    3. Share your toys with other students. Both playing and learning are important to do in school!

    4. You’re going to see your friends again, and your favorite teachers! Don’t worry and talk to everyone.

    5. I know you’re missing home, but you’ll be here in a few hours. Enjoy your day at school and make the most of it.

    6. I packed your favorite lunch, and I love you very much. Remember to raise your hand if you have any questions.

    7. Read books, draw paintings, and study with intent. There’s so much to do in school! Tell me all about your day when you come back.

    8. You are amazing inside and outside, and school is your place to shine. Remember that you’re always loved by us.

    9. Listen to your teachers. They’re trying to teach you the right skills to help you learn better.

    10. You’re such an amazing child! You are so gifted and talented in so many ways.

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    Frequently Asked Questions

    What do you say on the first day of school?

    Parents can reassure their children about the positive experiences they will have when they go to school. You can share affirmations and positive messages such as – “You’re capable of anything you want to do.” & “You’re super-talented and can achieve anything.”

    How do kids feel on the first day of school?

    The first day back can invoke feelings of anxiousness and excitement, depending on whether it’s a new school and whether they are going to be making new friends. It is best to be patient with children on their first day back to help them ease away their jitters.

    What should parents not do on the first day of school?

    Parents should not push their children too hard on the first day back. They shouldn’t also be disconnected from the transition process and expect kids to figure it out themselves. They should provide a well-structured back-to-school plan to help them navigate new environments. 

    What should kids know on their first day of school?

    Kids should be acquainted with the source material they will focus on for the year. Preparation is vital when starting a new year, so reading, focusing on skills enhancement, and balancing their schedules can help significantly.

    What can parents do to ease their child’s anxiety about school?

    Parents should help their children rediscover the joy of education, meeting new people, and participating in group activities. This is key for kids entering a new grade or starting school after a long online-only period.       

    Brian Lee
    Brian Lee is a writer and parent of 3 spirited children. He loves writing about his parenting experience, the lessons his kids teach him every day and parenting hacks and tricks he’s picked up along the way.

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