Ah… the last sweet days of Summertime. No more beaches, late nights, or vacations… back to early mornings, sharpened pencils, and “business.”
It’s Back To School time! And, hopefully, with FLY’s mission, that never means away from Play.
As always, our goal is to bring all that Summertime play with us into the school year! But it’s tricky to communicate that to our students when all they see is the return to that big old building with those big old rules.
As a kid, I remember the freedom, joy and experiential education I got from my Summer days, and though I was excited to go back to school to see my friends, I also knew that getting back to school would mean following someone else’s rules and schedule. Many kids will start new schools, have a harder course load, and even transition from old friendships to new. Whether your child is already in the first few weeks of school or is just heading back, it is so important to help guide and prepare them for transition.
Just like the seasons change, the energy of our lives naturally change with our activities, surroundings, and people we engage with. As grownups, we may still be working on these things ourselves, but we have the experience and foresight to begin to instill these lessons in our young ones early so they can become flexible and joyful people who experience change and growth and excitement!
Here are some FLY Tips for easing the Back to School Transition!
1. GIVE YOURSELF (and your kids) A STAYCATION!
Our tendency is to fill our plates, especially during the Summer when there is time to travel, so many Summer camps, and a ton of outdoor festivals, parks, play dates and the rest.
As with ALL things, and according to our FLY method, if you want to take off and fly, you’ve gotta start on the ground. Kids have such a hard time remaining grounded and stable already, so sometimes it is up to us to provide all the circumstances necessary for them to feel that life is steady. A STAYcation is sometimes one of the best ways to do this. Take one or two days where you don’t plan anything but home time. Let yourself have some sweet bonding time with your young one before you both get to back to the busy grind. Make meals together, snuggle, brainstorm and dream about the exciting things this new school year brings, read books, create stories, art projects- there are a million and one things to do together! For more ideas, you can check out THESE AT HOME ACTIVITIES from the beginning of Summer 🙂
I know, it is so so hard these days to imagine what anything would be like without iPad, iPhone, iCarumba!
A way to make unplugging playful for your kids (and not just a seeming punishment) is to unplug EVERYTHING. Yup! No lights, no TV, no computers… just for a day. (If you’re breaking out in a sweat, you’re not alone… it’s sometimes most difficult for us to unplug! But I promise whatever you put down will be there to pick up later).
This allows everyone to be creative with how they treat their day- what can we make for dinner without electric? how will we light the house? what things can we do with just our imagination to guide us?
Helping the kids unplug is a great way to transition into the school year. In my opinion, no one should be having screen time, especially on school nights. I know this is a lofty goal, and it’s much easier said then done when kids are begging and crying, but stay firm in this rule, and your kid’s brain, heart and spirit will be so much happier! There’s a whole article to come on this… stay tuned.
3. VISION BOARDS
Have you asked your kids what they are most excited for this year? What they are most scared of? Usually parents get a peek into what the coming year has to bring for your kids… make sure you begin to communicate these things right away! Get them excited. Since a lot of kids aren’t super big talkers and communicators, I love to make a VISION board collage complete with drawings, magazine clippings, and pictures.
It’s wonderful to make individual visions for the new school year, and also make a family vision board. Have a wonderful trip you’re looking forward to? Any other family milestones to celebrate from the past year? Concerts, Recitals, Classes, Friends you’d like to see this coming year?
Vision together and make this year memorable and centered in all your hearts. Keep it on your fridge as a reminder of the blessings you have to look forward to.
4. CALM YOUR MIND
Meditation and Contemplation are essential practices to happy, healthy and whole. Simply, if we are so busy listening to outer voices, and so busy listening to the chatter in our brain, we rarely will gain insight into that little voice that truly is guiding our hearts and actions.
Seem impossible for you? Even more impossible for your kids? That’s why we’re here! Check out this video on FLY TV, especially geared toward positive thinking, visualization, and releasing fears and worries!