Sunday Seven

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Welcome to Back to School Week at! My goal is to encourage you to have an amazing experience with your family. Today I want to talk to you about 7 habits that make our school year successful.

1 • No Screens on School Nights - I started this habit last year and it really helped us. I post a note in the TV and the kids know they have to wait till Friday after school to watch TV. The first noticeable change was in my transition time. Changing activities was easy because they were no longer glued to the TV. It also encouraged them to use their imagination and find other ways to play. I believe that this is a good habit that will benefit them in the future. If I don’t have to break this bad habit in the future, I’m winning.

2 • Eat a good breakfast - I insist that the kids eat what I consider a good breakfast before going to school. We are oatmeal people, so that’s what we eat most of the time. Kids concentrate better at school when they eat well in the morning. I also believe that a good breakfast provides you with a great start to your day. I have the option of letting the kids eat at school but I don’t trust them to be focused to start and finish their breakfast before going to class. I’m that mom that needs to see an empty bowl.

3 • Pray - we have the habit of praying on the way to school. We thank God for another day and we ask that He surrounds their school with His protection. We pray for each teacher by name. If we know that a teacher or classmate is sick, we pray for healing. I also pray that the kids will be filled with God’s peace during that day. I’m the last one to pray so I bless my children in Jesus’ name, I tell them I love them and off they go to their classes. If I ever forget to pray, they are quick to remind me, which is neat.

4 • Preparedness - I try to get outfits, shoes, homework and everything ready so that our mornings are not stressful. I understand that some things need to be done in the morning but I truly believe that “by failing to prepare you are preparing to fail.” A lot of the last minute stress can be solved by preparing ahead of time. It’s important to find a system of preparation that works for your family. This year my system includes a specific place for backpacks and lunch bags the kids can easily grab and go. It also included labeling their drawers so they can grab their own outfits (except for my youngest one who doesn’t know the difference between pajamas and school clothes). Take some time to find what works for your family.

5 • Stress-Free Homework - Last year I learned that homework time can be effective when it’s stress-free. I can’t really multitask during homework time. I can’t drag our study time for hours. I learned that it is wise to remove any stress from that time so that we can get through it. One of things I didn’t expect by being a "baby buncher" (having kids back to back) is that when it’s homework time, everybody wants my attention and that can be overwhelming. I learned to give the younger siblings an interesting activity to do while the older sibling did homework. I also learned how to pass the baton to my husband when I saw that I didn’t have what it takes. One great thing I did was to listen to my kids’ school director talk about the best environment for homework. It was amazing to learn how small changes made the process easier.

6 • Sleep Well - I enforce sleep times because resting makes a child’s life better. We make sure they get to bed at a decent time daily and we let them stay up later on weekends just because they can rest during the day. Investing on sleep is one of the best things we can do for our children and for ourselves. Rest is one thing you can’t put on a pill so it needs to happen daily. Find out how many hours of sleep your child is supposed to sleep and start that transition to your school year schedule.

7 • Gratitude - How exactly will the habit of gratitude make your school year successful? Well, the Bible is filled with encouragement in that area. We can agree that Grateful people are a joy to be around. I want the benefits of Gratitude in my life. I also want my children to be grateful in word but especially in deed. I get to model Gratitude to my children this school year. I have always been thankful to the wonderful early childhood professionals who cared for my kids and this is a good habit I want to continue this school year. I’m not being grateful to get something back from them but because I get to represent the God I worship when I show Gratitude in all circumstances.

• What are the good habits that make your school year successful?  
TOMORROW: 5 Questions to Ask before agreeing (or not) to Volunteer.