Author: Jyotsna Keni, MD, Pediatrician
It’s that time of year – Back to School! Here are some tips that can help your child be set up for success at school from CHOC!
Eat a Good Breakfast
Students are more alert and do better in class if they eat a good breakfast. It improves your energy levels and ability to concentrate in the short term, and can help with better weight management, reduced risk of type 2 diabetes and heart disease in the long term.
Get Adequate Sleep
Kids need at least 8½ hours of sleep each night to feel rested. Sleep deprivation can lead students to fall asleep in class and can also make it hard to concentrate. It can be more productive to get the sleep they need than it is to stay up late cramming: Studies found that students who got enough sleep before a math test were nearly three times more likely to figure out the problem than those who stayed up all night. Try to have your child go to bed at the same time each night, and don’t let them sleep too late on the weekend!
One of the best ways for your child to make friends and learn their way around is by joining school clubs, sports teams, and activities. Even if they can’t kick a 30-yard field goal or sing a solo, have them get involved in other ways. They can attend a school play, help with a bake sale, or cheer on friends at a swim meet — it’ll help your child feel like a part of things.
Here are some more tips to help ensure your child has a safe, healthy and happy year.
- Schedule a back-to-school physical that includes any necessary vaccinations.
- Start a dialogue about if and how your child uses social media.
- Create a safe, judgment-free zone for your child to discuss tough issues with you.
- Ensure your child eats a healthy breakfast that contains protein. Hunger will affect a child’s performance in class.
- Plan for safe travel to & from school. Provide proper age appropriate supervision for morning drop offs and after school childcare.
- Develop a healthy sleep routine. Set a consistent bedtime. If your child has electronic devices, make sure they are turned off before bedtime.
- Build good homework & study habits. Create a homework-friendly environment at home that consists of a workspace that is quiet and promotes study.
- Plan for mindful media use. Establish a household rule that the television and other electronic devices stay off while doing homework; supervise computer and internet use.
- Help your child organize their homework via checklists and timers.
- If your child is struggling with a certain subject, speak with their teacher for recommendations on how to help.
- If your child would benefit from special education services, submit a request to the school for an Individualized Education Program evaluation.
- Contact a pediatrician if you notice changes in your child’s mental or behavioral health, as well as changes in sleep, weight, and eating habits.
Click the link below for CHOC’s Back to School Guide for Parents!
The information provided is for general interest only and should not be misconstrued as a diagnosis, prognosis or treatment recommendation. This information does not in any way constitute the practice of medicine, or any other health care profession. Readers are directed to consult their health care provider regarding their specific health situation. Marque Medical is not liable for any action taken by a reader based upon this information.