Easy Mom Hacks to Make the First Day of School After Winter Break Easier
As the holiday season wraps up kids find themselves hit with the grim realization that school is looming nearby. Some feign illness in a desperate attempt to extend their days of Fortnite just a little longer. Others downright refuse to return to the normal routine. If you’re lucky your little learners are ready to get back at it with only minimal encouragement. In our house though, that’s rarely the case.
You can’t blame them. Who wants to go back to sitting in a desk going over math facts after nearly a month of cookies, presents, and fun? Madness, I tell ya!
There are a few things we moms can keep in our arsenal to make the transition a little easier. With tons of
bribing encouragement, and yes…more cookies, you too can make the transition back to school after winter break a little easier. ( I mean, what isn’t better with cookies?)
Don’t Fake It
Let’s be real here mama. You most likely don’t enjoy the idea of getting back to school any more than your kids do. Cut the crap with them and keep it real. There’s no need to fake excitement for those early mornings, missing shoes, or runny noses. Nine times out of ten your kids already know you aren’t being sincere anyway.
By being real with them you help them understand that it’s ok to not be that excited. It’s ok to have all of the emotions that they are feeling. All the same, it’s important to get it together and work as a team to get school started again on the right foot.
You can use this time to let them know that you understand how they feel. You can also use it as a great way to help get them pumped for upcoming events such as field trips or special days at school.
Make it Special
A great way to make going back to school after Christmas more fun is to make the first day back a special one! Make your kids their favorite breakfast. Pick out their favorite or most comfortable outfit. If you’re short on time in the morning you can even take them out for a special ice cream date or their favorite dinner.
Any little thing you can do to boost their day will help get them back in a good mood. It doesn’t have to be anything big or over the top. Just a little something to let them know that you understand and appreciate the effort they are putting in at school.
A Little Refresher Never Hurts
No, we aren’t talking about math drills or memorization here. You don’t want to do it. I know, homeschool mamas I hear you. We LOVE math drills. Don’t even get me started on worksheets. Now isn’t the time though. We don’t want to overdo it. However, we DO want to help make sure they are ready to hit the ground running this semester.
Take an evening to have a look over everything they were working on before the break. Were they doing fractions? Maybe sentence structure?
Take a quick peek at each class they are in and make notes on what they were learning. Then, starting a week or so before going back to school, find ways to work it into everyday life. The last thing you want to do is print off a stack of worksheets. There’s always time for worksheets. This should just be a fun refresher of knowledge already in those brains of theirs.
If they need a little boost in math you could work it into a fun baking activity. If science isn’t their strong suit you could plan a trip to a local museum in those last few days before they go back. There are tons of ways to work a little refresher into everyday life.
Get Back to the Routine
Moms and kids alike would agree that the worst part of going back after winter break is getting back into a routine. Those early mornings. The decreased screen time. Having to actually bathe regularly again. It’s awful.
A great way to handle returning to any routine is to step your way back into it slowly. Don’t wait until the night before school to start those early bedtimes again. Start at least a week early and slowly step bedtimes back to their school day hour. This should naturally help kids start waking a little earlier on their own. Unless, of course, they are like my kids and can give my cats a run for their money on time asleep in any given day.
Everything that has slacked off a little over the holiday break can be reigned in a little bit by bit before the day school actually starts. A little planning ahead can go a long way in ending grumpy moods, sleepiness, and anxiousness brought about by sudden changes. This can be especially true for those children who have emotional or behavioral difficulties.
Get Organized for Back to School
Getting back into the swing of things for school can be just as hard on moms as it is for kids. We have to get back to busy schedules, more responsibilities, and much more.
Getting organized ahead of time can be a great way to have your ducks in a row before the big day. The new year is a great time to do this because there are tons of great resources and sales out there to help!
Just how organized you need to be depends on your schedule. If you don’t tend to have much going on you should be able to get by with a simple planner. I have one that I use for home items and one I use just for blogging. I don’t know how I ever managed life without a planner.
For those of us with multiple appointments, meetings, and everything else going on it may take a little more. A great way I have found to keep everyone’s schedule in one place is the Cozi app. Everyone can add their appointments and obligations to the shared calendar app. Then, when you need to check availability you have everyone’s schedule right there in one place! It has been a life saver for me so many times.
One of the most important things a mom can do to prepare for going back to school after winter break is to rest up. Sure, you’ve just had a nearly month-long vacation. Let’s be honest though. For most of us, it was anything but relaxing. There was so much shopping, wrapping, cooking, cleaning, stressing…. The holidays can be a super stressful time for those of mom kind.
Taking a few days to rest and recuperate is important so that you can be on your A game for the first day of school. Take some time for self-care. Read a book or two. Get your thoughts together to help your kids really rock the rest of the school year.
Have dad (or a grandparent) take the kids out to buy a new outfit for school or to an afternoon movie. Use that time to get your game plan together for the semester. In addition to making sure your kids are taken care of be sure to schedule in time to make sure you are taken care of too.
Grab our free meal planner printable to help make back to school a little easier!
Do you have any tips you use to help get back into the swing of things after winter break? Leave us a comment and let us know how you get your kids pumped to finish out the school year like rockstars! Be sure to pin this post for later and share with any friends who are struggling with the back to school blues!
Do you want to be the first to know when we have new parenting tips available? Join our mailing list for all of our latest tasty recipes, fun DIY projects, health and self-care tips, and much more!
Pin This for Later!