After a long holiday of late nights, snacking all day and kids running rampant, the New Year is fast approaching. As time zooms on, much quicker than you realize, there are quite a few things you should get under your belt to have a successful start to 2021. Before the school bell rings, follow these 8 tips for not only starting the year right, but continuing on a positive path throughout for the whole family.
Say goodbye to the holiday break with a proper send-off and enjoy an outing or activity as a family on the last day. Go to the beach and munch on ice creams or have a picnic in the backyard for dinner. Go paint balling, ice-skating, to the movies or walk the dogs as a family. Plan something that everyone will appreciate and take part in. This creates a unified feeling and will have each individual ready to kick off the New Year with a positive attitude.
Having been super relaxed during the holiday break it will be tough for both children and parents to get back into a regular routine. Start a week earlier to make the transition easier on everyone. The kids might not be too impressed with heading off to bed at a decent time, but they will thank you when that first morning comes and they are up and energized, ready to tackle the day. This will also eliminate that dreaded first day back to school begging, pleading and eventually threatening or bribing your kids to get out of bed!
Another great way to get back into the swing of things is to sit down for family dinners a few nights before to establish regular eating habits and get back into eating healthy meals again.
Have a family meeting and make a point of sharing what each person’s goals are for the New Year. Your child might want to get an A in a specific subject or enter a race; you might want to get that promotion at work or finish a project at home. Make this discussion fun by putting up colourful motivational posters or create a family vision board with everyone’s goals clearly mapped out. This will allow each person to share what they wish to achieve and receive valuable input from other family members, as well as help to stay motivated and accountable for their goals.
Keep the end in mind from the get go and you are more likely to achieve what you have set out to do.
Ok, so this is not so fun to do, but is very necessary to making a fresh start to a phenomenal 2021. Take a day in that last week of holiday and have all family members throwing out their old clothes, school supplies and any other clutter that’s been accumulated during the previous year. Tidy up desks and make a clean space for the new years’ success to begin. Throw out your old work papers, clean out e-mails and make a general effort to get the house in order as this will aid in things running smoothly from the get go.
Think back to last years scramble and waiting in line to get your children’s dental check ups, school uniforms, stationery and haircuts at the last minute. Moaning, kicking, screaming and pleading to just sit still already while the hairdresser is busy! Sound familiar? Total nightmare, right? Let’s avoid that this year, shall we, and make those appointments well in advance so that we don’t have to endure that stress so close to starting the school year.
Get all those appointments out of the way a week before and the start to the new year will be smooth sailing for all.
Let’s face it, school mornings were not designed to be effortless and smooth, what with everyone trying to get ready, battling for bathroom time and the general rush that always preludes leaving for school. Make this year different, by taking just a few minutes each evening to prep for lunches and healthy after school snacks. Children and adults need low fat, brain boosting foods to get through the day and the usual last minute grab for something that is inevitably sugar laden and unhealthy is just not going to cut it.
Plan ahead for school lunches and ensure that by Sunday evening you have bought fresh health bread and healthy foods such as ham, cheese, fruit, nuts, yoghurts, biltong and any other family favourites that are nutritious. Prep lunches the night before and get the kids involved with work stations and a production line to get it done quickly. This encourages responsibility and also takes the pressure off you when the kids are involved in making their own food. You can even set aside some time on the weekend to bake health muffins or a quick quiche to pack to school and work, for a snack in the afternoon, rather than grabbing a slice of pizza or a pie on the go.
You may not feel that that Hello Kitty backpack is really necessary or those Spiderman book covers are a waste of money, but they matter to your kids and it is vitally important that the start to the academic year be colourful and fun for your child. Make the time to take your children shopping for their school supplies and get them involved in choosing what they like. This will have them eager to fill those pages and enjoy what they are doing.
Most of us tend to fall into the trap of assuming that the first term is not as important as the rest of the year. Wrong. Students today are bombarded with work, assignments and tests from the get go and their results count from the very first term already. The majority of scholars require a helping hand when it comes to coping with their workload and the best thing you can do, as a parent, is to provide that safety net early on. There are some truly fantastic private tutoring companies out there, such as Turtlejar that provides experienced and qualified private tutors that are available to assist your children with their studies.
The use of a private tutor from the start of the year will ensure that your child(ren) are up to date and able to cope with as well as firmly grasp their school work. They will also be prepped for tests, assisted with assignments and constantly motivated to attain their goals. By the time the mid year exams are approaching your child will be sailing through and confidently revising their work, rather than freaking out and trying in vain to understand their subjects at the last minute.
Incorporate these helpful tips into your new year and your 2021 is sure to a rip roaring success!