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Published on August 17, 2017

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Dean Pediatrician Anne Arbet, MD, shares how to master the new school year

A new school year can bring about big changes. Make the transition from summer to school year easier on everyone with a little preparation.

Do It Gradually: Two weeks before school starts, start moving everyone back to summer schedules – including earlier wake-ups and bedtimes. After the flexible summer schedule, kids need time to get back into a structured routine. Working up to earlier wake-up calls will make it easier to adjust. Start by moving bedtime and wake-up times up by about five or ten minutes per day until you are on time for the school year.

Visualize: Actually seeing all of the new year commitments can make it easier to understand just how busy everyone will be. Buy or make a large calendar or whiteboard to note after-school activities, practices and other commitments.

Master Lunch: If your kids are old enough to pack their own lunches, go with it! Practice the art of a perfect sack lunch before school starts. When the timecomes, have them pack their lunches the night before to minimize hectic mornings. Looking for lunch ideas? Check out this helpful infographic for healthy and fun ideas.

Prepare Early: Save your sanity by avoiding the morning family rush hour. Have kids choose their outfits before bedtime and load up backpacks before hitting the sheets. Sports practices or play dates after class? Get gear together in the evening so it’s ready to go the next morning. Read up on more ways to tame the morning madness here.

Do a Dry Run: If you’re starting a new school, do a dry run. Pick a weekday at the time you’ll be driving so you can time out the morning drive. Don’t forget to finish up your school day practice run with a special breakfast when you can talk about how great the new year will be!

What are your best tips for getting back into the fall groove? Share them with us below!

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