How to Prepare Children for School in the Fall

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Man, this year has been one crazy roller coaster. It is definitely a year we will never forget, and probably a year our children will never forget. As the pandemic continues, we now have to begin thinking about how to prepare children for school in the fall.

This is something I am glad I don’t have to think about as all my children are older, but I do have to think about it for my grandchildren. 

First and foremost, you have to make some really big decisions regarding your child’s education. If your children are used to going to public schools and you are choosing to homeschool, this is going to be a big adjustment.

If you are choosing to send your kids to school, this is going to be a huge adjustment as well if they’ve been doing online learning or homeschooled.

There really is no one-size-fits-all solution to school in the fall. However, I do have some advice on how you can prepare your children for school in the fall regardless of how you choose to school them. 

Public School: How to Prepare Children for School in the Fall

If you are choosing to send your children back to a public school in the fall, you will want to prepare your children for everything they will experience. If I was younger I would have loved a purple backpack, just saying. We didn’t use backpacks when I was growing up.

How to Prepare Children for School in the Fall

Have a Conversation

The best thing you can do for your children is to have a positive conversation with them. They need to know what school is going to look like for them. Here are some talking points to consider:

  • When they will be wearing masks and why they will need to. 
  • The fact that they may get temperature checks each day at school.
  • The 6 feet apart rule and what it means, if the school has the resources to space the students. 
  • Talk about the procedures the school system has laid out for them as it relates to class size, lunchtime, etc. 
  • Give your expectations of them for this school year. 

Practice Wearing a Mask

If your children have not worn a mask at all during this time, you need to get them accustomed to it. Take them to the store and have them wear one. Have your child wear a mask for as long as they can possibly stand it to see if they can make it a whole day with one on. 

Do an Experiment on Germs

Many children don’t quite understand why they will need to wear a mask. They may not understand how germs work. You can use glitter as a way to show how germs spread. This is also a perfect opportunity to talk about proper handwashing

Prepare Hygiene Items

Although we would like to think that schools will have all the resources they need, many schools don’t have enough funding to provide certain hygiene items that are super important during a pandemic. Prepare the following items for your child to use at school:

Prepare Items In Case Your Child Gets Sick

If your kids are anything like mine used to be, when they went to school, they got sick. Schools are a cesspool for germs. So, prepare for that dreaded phone call and consider having some or all of the following items on hand:

Homeschool: How to Prepare Children for School in the Fall

If you feel that sending your child back to school just isn’t an option for you, you can always choose to homeschool. If you have homeschooled in the past, your child will probably know what to expect, but if you haven’t, it is important to prepare them for the transition. 

Have a Conversation

Talking to your children is so important. One of the best ways to prepare children for school in the fall is to first have a conversation with them. Here are some talking points:

  • Let them know you have chosen to homeschool them instead of sending them back. 
  • Talk to your child about what homeschool will look like.
  • Let your children know what times you expect them to be doing school work. 
  • Discuss why you have chosen to homeschool. 
  • Let them see the curriculum you have chosen. If you have not chosen a curriculum yet, I would suggest looking into Easy Peasy All-in-One Homeschool
  • Assure them that you’ll provide some social time with close friends when time and proper social distancing can be performed.

Set Up a Learning Environment

Depending on the age of your children, choose a place in your home that will be as distraction-free as possible. This could be a room just for school or a small area in your living room. Allow your children to help you set it up. Make sure you have the following supplies for your young childrens’ homeschool:

  • Pencils
  • Pens
  • Paper
  • Erasers
  • Crayons
  • Colored pencils
  • Glue sticks
  • Books

Start a Routine Now

When it’s time for school to start, it can be hard to get into a routine, especially if there is not somewhere you have to be at a particular time, like you have at a regular school. Start a routine now, or about a month before school starts. Here is a generic routine that can help you be ready to start homeschooling:

  • Set a bedtime routine.
  • Wake children up at the same time every morning.
  • Implement small educational activities at a time such as a science project or reading time. 

The more you get things set up now, the easier it will be to transition in the fall. 

Prepare Social Activities for Your Children

One of the biggest concerns parents have about their children homeschooling is a lack of social activities and the chance to learn proper social skills. But, children who are homeschooled can learn social skills in a number of ways. In order to prepare children for school in the fall, it’s important to think about ways to get them socialized. Here are some activities you could consider:

  • Join a local homeschool support group or a homeschool coop.
  • Have your kids take dance lessons.
  • Let them join gymnastics.
  • Find a basketball team if your area is allowing gyms to open.
  • Talk with the public school about them joining extracurricular activities.
  • Sign them up for music lessons.

eLearning: How to Prepare Children for School in the Fall

Many schools are giving the option of in-person education or eLearning that can be done at home. If you are choosing to do eLearning, you will want to prepare your children for doing their academics online. 

Have that Conversation

Again, it’s always important to have a conversation with your child about your plans for the fall. You will want to talk to them about the following:

  • Why you chose to do eLearning.
  • When they will be doing the eLearning during the day.
  • Your expectations for their eLearning assignments.

You may also want to talk to your child about how this will only be temporary and that when the pandemic is over they will be able to return to school with their friends. 

Designate a Place for eLearning

I promise you that giving them a computer and then plopping them in front of the TV on the couch is going to be a nightmare. So, like a homeschooling parent would, create a place where children will do their eLearning each day. You can even have your child help you create this space. 

Find Screen Free Activities to Do

One thing many parents struggled with when doing eLearning was the amount of time kids were on a screen. If your child is doing eLearning, they are going to need screen-free activities to do when they are finished with the school materials. So, no TV for a couple of hours after they have stared at a screen for school. Here are some activities you can consider:

  • Take a bike ride.
  • Go outside and play.
  • Spend time coloring.
  • Play a board game.
  • Do a puzzle together.
  • Practice baking skills.
  • Get out of the house.

Prepare Social Activities for Your Children

Just like with homeschooling, you will want to make sure your children are able to build their social skills.  Here are some activities you could consider:

  • Join a local homeschool support group or a homeschool coop.
  • Have your kids take dance lessons.
  • Let them join gymnastics.
  • Find a basketball team.
  • Talk with the public school about them joining extracurricular activities.
  • Sign them up for music lessons.

Final Word

The need to decide how to prepare your children for school in the fall is on everyone’s mind right now. I have seen a lot of controversy about sending children to school. Please remember that whatever option you choose should be what is best for you and your family.

Be kind to others who may have a different plan for starting school in the fall. We are all in this together and doing the best we can. Always be prepared and hope for the best! May God bless this world, Linda

Copyright Images: School Supplies Deposit photos_51710933_s-2019, Purple Backpack Deposit photos_38185845_s-2019

4 thoughts on “How to Prepare Children for School in the Fall

  • July 28, 2020 at 5:37 am
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    Kinda hard to explain much to my 4yr old. granddaughter starting kindergarten. My Niece has decided to homeschool.
    I dunno whats going to happen or how it’s going to happen. They will get an education one way or another.
    What bothers me is many will not.
    I’m angry about it because they still want me to pay property taxes and then even proposed another bond issue. Why should I pay if I’m doing the work?

    Reply
    • July 28, 2020 at 5:47 am
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      Hi Matt, this is so true. I’m worried about those families who do have access to wifi, let alone a computer or a laptop. So many of us take things for granted but it’s a fact and we all know it. Yes, here in UTAH they sent “trucks/a small bus” to provide wifi in certain locations, it really is something we take for granted. They handed out laptops in a parking lot to use if needed. I still wonder where all that tax money is going. Well, it should be lowered and cut some salaries that government leaders have. We have put up with this long enough, all hell is going to break loose sooner than later. Greed is the name of the game in so many areas of government entities. Enough is enough. I’m not I will see a change in my lifetime, but I can hope. Linda

      Reply
  • July 29, 2020 at 5:27 pm
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    The comments are playing into the msm narrative that this is a pandemic. It’s not. It’s a takedown of the US. It’s a submission to the powers that think they rule over us. Its people listening and believing we are going to die because of this released intentional virus. I feel so very alone in my thoughts because the propaganda is so fierce and anything real is censored. People are so programmed. It’s really sad we will submit to this farce. God save me from this nightmare

    Reply
    • July 29, 2020 at 5:35 pm
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      Hi Joe, oh trust me, you are not alone. I agree with you, it is sad and everything is indeed censored. Linda

      Reply

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