Posts Tagged ‘back to school’

August 15th, 2011

Back To School Coloring Pages and Printables

Back to School coloring page and activity links from Operation Letter to SantaIt is time to head back to school and there are thousands of web sites with free coloring books and printable coloring sheets to print and color in. Here are just a few to help your children look forward to going back to school.

Back to School Coloring Printables

Letters and Numbers Coloring Pages

  • Alphabet Coloring Printables: Alphabet coloring pages are one of the first art and learning activities for preschoolers. Alphabet coloring pages and bubble letter printable sheets are a wonderful resource for artists and teachers. Designers, crafters and homeschoolers use letter outlines, monograms and alphabet letters for arts projects.
  • Alphabet Worksheets: Learn to recognize, read, and write letters of the alphabet. Dozens of free worksheets for learning the ABCs. Includes uppercase (capital) and lowercase letters.

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August 5th, 2011

Back-to-School: Prepping Your Kids for the Change

Back to School Tips from Operation Letters to SantaEvery child loves summer vacation. They’re free from schoolwork. They can wake up as late as they want to. And, they are free to hang out with their friends on weekdays. Summer vacation is truly the most exciting part of every child’s year.

Every summer vacation, though, must come to an end. You can avoid an abrupt ending and a house full of cranky children if you start the back-to-school preparation process a few weeks before class starts.

Utilize the tips below to minimize the sting of going back to school on your children.

1. Adjust their sleep schedule. Wean your kids into a school-ready sleeping schedule by making them fall asleep an hour earlier each week. Continue cutting back their bedtime until their sleeping patterns match those they’ll maintain throughout the school year.

2. Assign homework. It’s true that kids dislike homework. But it’s important to keep their minds sharp. On the Internet, you can find many places that offer free downloadable worksheets for children of all ages to complete outside of school. Websites like www.teach-nology.com, www.abcteach.com, and www.lessonplanet.com provide a wide variety of options. Keep it lighthearted. Try to assign fun homework assignments and be lenient in deadlines. After all, it is summer vacation and your kids deserve to spend some of their time relaxing. One assignment per subject that is due at the end of the week is plenty.

3. Tighten curfews. If you’re like most parents, you likely extend your children’s curfews throughout the summer. A few weeks before classes begin, be stricter about the time your children need to be home and which days they can go out with their friends.  Allow your children to keep their summer curfew active on Fridays and Saturdays. Sunday through Thursday, implement a “school-ready” curfew. This will mentally prepare your children for the new set of rules that will be in effect during the school year.

4. Make the change exciting. To your children, August is just the beginning of another boring school year. However, as a parent, you can’t help but marvel at the speed your babies are maturing! Help them see what you see by reminding them of all of the opportunities that will soon be available to them in the new school year.

Be firm about your decisions when preparing your kids for the change of going back to school. Most children are resistant when you first begin to implement these changes. However, after about a week or so, most children begin to accept the new routines.

Remember to take your children’s feelings and desires into account when designing your routine for getting ready to return to school. Kids have unique needs, and it’s important to let them know that their opinions are valuable. Be willing to give in a little and you’ll often receive a great deal of cooperation in return.

By implementing these changes, you’ll prepare your children well for going back to school. When school begins, it will be less of a shock to your children and the transition to a new daily routine will be an easier one for all.

Visit Operation Letter To Santa

July 19th, 2011

Back To School Tips For Busy Moms

Back to School Tips for Busy Moms From Operation Letters To SantaAlready, mom’s are shoppping for school supplies. When is is time to get ready to go back to school, it helps to get organized. If you go into the school year with a sense of clarity, your children will start the school year off with an advantage. The whole learning process can go smoothly with some basic organizational skills for school.

Try these nine tips to properly prepare and organize the beginning of your school year:

  1. Use folders and binders. It helps have a way to keep all of your school paperwork sorted for easy access. Sometimes, your child’s teacher will require a specific set folders or binders, so check to see if the school or teacher has provided a list of specific supplies before you go shopping.
  2. Have a place for everything. Decide on a set spot for all of your school things. Designate specific slots or pouches for everything from papers and notebooks to pencils and pens. If you know exactly where something is, you save time spent on looking for it later.
  3. Make a to-do list. A to-do list is essential for staying on top of everything going on with school. If you try to keep everything you need to do in your head, you’re bound to forget something. A to-do list right in front of you will help you see exactly what should be done and when. It’s a great time saver.
  4. Have your things ready the night before school. Gather your things before you go to sleep at night. This method will be a lifesaver for you if you’re not a morning person. In the morning, you can get out of bed and know that your bags are packed and ready to go. To save even more time in the mornings, lay out each child’s clothes the night before. Trying to figure out what to wear in the midst of the morning rush sets you up for a stressful day. However, a little advance planning can help you feel in control and set the stage for a productive day instead.
  5. Plan your meals. If you’re busy, you might be tempted to skip a meal. To maintain your health and energy, ensure that you’re eating nutritiously. Plan enough time in advance for breakfast in the morning and pack a healthy lunch.
  6. Have a place for homework. Have a set place and time to do homework. If they stay organized with a specific homework flow, the whole process can go quickly and the kids will be done before you know it
  7. Keep lines of communication open. In order to have an efficient and organized life, discuss important issues with your family members on a regular basis. Keep the lines of communication open and let your children know that you value their input and concerns.
  8. Line up transportation. Decide on school transportation plans early. Will your kids take the bus, or do you need to take them to school? Plan for back up transportation whenever possible for the times that things don’t go according to plan.
  9. Have the right attitude. Remember that a positive attitude can make things run smoothly. Your attitude can be the difference between success and failure in keeping things organized. Your attitude determines whether your household is one of peace or chaos. Choose peace!

Remember to enjoy the process of preparing for school. Try new things, and keep the goal in mind. A little advance planning can go a long way towards relieving much of the stress that the beginning of school brings, and above all, once you have these systems in place, remain consistent!

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September 26th, 2010

10 Tips for Getting Your Toddler Ready for Preschool

10 Tips For Getting Your Toddler Ready For Pre-School from Operation SantaPreschool is a big step in your toddler’s life. Whether your child is used to being at home with you all day, or he’s already used to a daycare environment, the shift to a new routine and new surroundings can be a challenging one. However, with a few small steps and some advance planning, the step into school life can be a positive experience for both of you.

Try these 10 tips to get your toddler ready for preschool:

  1. Work on potty training. Many preschools require you to bring your child already potty trained. The earlier you plan on starting preschool, the more important it is to begin potty training early.
  2. Start with a shorter day or shorter week. Many preschool programs allow your child to attend shorter school sessions. Consider a program that only meets two or three days per week initially. You can also opt for half-day sessions at some preschools.
  3. Bring your toddler to play groups. If your child has many experiences in playgroups with other kids, he will be used to interacting with other children. Offer opportunities for your child to become as comfortable as possible in social situations.
  4. Work on discipline early. Establish a consistent discipline routine with your toddler. Get your child used to consistent consequences for misbehavior, and try to make those consequences similar to the ones he’ll face in preschool.
  5. Give your toddler art supplies. Get your toddler used to using art supplies like paper, crayons, and chalk. Many preschool days feature a time of arts and crafts, and you can ease your child’s transition to school life by introducing art to him early.
  6. Read to your toddler every day. When you read to your child every day, you help them to think and learn about the world around him. Pick new books to read every once in awhile, but keep returning to your toddler’s favorites also. If you encourage them to read while they’re young, they’ll be excited about learning for a lifetime.
  7. Start naming letters and numbers. Introduce your child to letters and numbers whenever you have the opportunity. Numbers and letters are often taught in preschool, but your everyday routine offers many opportunities to introduce these concepts in a fun, engaging way.
  8. Identify colors and shapes. The same goes for naming colors and shapes. It’s a good idea to just point these things out to your child as you go about exploring life. Ask your child about different colors and shapes when you see them.
  9. Take your toddler to all checkups. Regular checkups are important for ensuring that your child is healthy. Your child may require certain immunizations in order to enter school. During your visits, your child’s doctor will verify that his physical development is on track.
  10. Let him go. It’s tough to watch your little baby grow up right in front of your eyes. Getting ready to start school can be a big change in your toddler’s life, but it’s a big change in yours as well. Prepare yourself emotionally for the big day, and remember that preschool is simply the beginning of a new, exciting stage in both of your lives.

Preschool brings with it a set of challenges that you may have never faced before. As you adjust to the new routines together, remember that anything new brings special opportunities and experiences. Embrace those experiences together, and make the most of this new season of life.

Visit us at Operation Letters to Santa for almost 1000 pages of Holiday Activities, Christmas Carols, Christmas Sheet Music, Holiday recipes, Free gifts and downloads and so much more!

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September 23rd, 2010

Back-to-School: Prepping Your Kids for the Change

Every child loves summer vacation. They’re free from schoolwork. They can wake up as late as they want to. And, they are free to hang out with their friends on weekdays. Besides the holidays, Summer vacation is truly the most exciting part of every child’s year.

Every summer vacation, though, must come to an end. You can avoid an abrupt ending and a house full of cranky children if you start the back-to-school preparation process a few weeks before class starts.

Utilize the tips below to minimize the sting of going back to school on your children.

1. Adjust their sleep schedule. Wean your kids into a school-ready sleeping schedule by making them fall asleep an hour earlier each week. Continue cutting back their bedtime until their sleeping patterns match those they’ll maintain throughout the school year. 

2. Assign homework. It’s true that kids dislike homework. But it’s important to keep their minds sharp.

On the Internet, you can find many places that offer free downloadable worksheets for children of all ages to complete outside of school. Websites like TeAch-nology.com, ABC Teach, and Lesson Planet  provide a wide variety of options.

Keep it lighthearted. Try to assign fun homework assignments and be lenient in deadlines. After all, it is summer vacation and your kids deserve to spend some of their time relaxing. One assignment per subject that is due at the end of the week is plenty.

3. Tighten curfews. If you’re like most parents, you likely extend your children’s curfews throughout the summer. A few weeks before classes begin, be stricter about the time your children need to be home and which days they can go out with their friends.

Consider allowing your children to keep their summer curfew active on Fridays and Saturdays. Sunday through Thursday, implement a “school-ready” curfew. This will mentally prepare your children for the new set of rules that will be in effect during the school year.

4. Make the change exciting. To your children, August is just the beginning of another boring school year. However, as a parent, you can’t help but marvel at the speed your babies are maturing! Help them see what you see by reminding them of all of the opportunities that will soon be available to them in the new school year.

Be firm about your decisions when preparing your kids for the change of going back to school. Most children are resistant when you first begin to implement these changes. However, after about a week or so, most children begin to accept the new routines.

Remember to take your children’s feelings and desires into account when designing your routine for getting ready to return to school. Kids have unique needs, and it’s important to let them know that their opinions are valuable. Be willing to give in a little and you’ll often receive a great deal of cooperation in return.

By implementing these changes, you’ll prepare your children well for going back to school. When school begins, it will be less of a shock to your children and the transition to a new daily routine will be an easier one for all.

Visit us at Operation Letters to Santa for almost 1000 pages of Holiday Activities, Christmas Carols, Christmas Sheet Music, Holiday recipes, Free gifts and downloads and so much more!

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September 21st, 2010

8 Tips to Help your Children Transition from Summertime to School Time

Back to School family funSummer is a time that most kids look forward to. Free from the burden of school, kids love the free time and fun activities of summer. When it’s all over and it’s time to return to school, however, you can ease the transition by taking an active role in helping your children cope with the life change that’s about to take place.

Try these eight tips to help your children transition from the leisurely days of summer to the challenges of an upcoming school year:

  • Talk about it. Keep an open dialogue with your children. If they have certain anxieties or reservations about attending school, help them ease their fears by giving them the opportunity to talk about it.
    • Help your children adopt a different perspective by pointing out the positives about school. School allows them to discover and develop new strengths. And they’ll be able to see their friends every day!
  • Establish a school routine early. If you’ve lost your routine over the summer, try to get back on track as early as possible. If you go into the school year with a routine, you can avoid many difficult days and stressful situations.
  • Throw a party. The end of summer can be a happy time. Celebrate the beginning of the school year by throwing a party or barbeque. This way, your children won’t dread school. Instead, they might look forward to the party and the school year.
  • Continue hobbies. It’s important to remind your children that they’ll still have free time after school and on weekends. If they played most of the day during the summer, they’ll still have plenty of playtimes after school lets out. The hobbies that they enjoyed during the summer can continue on through the school year.
  • Continue learning over the summer. One way to make the new beginning easier on your children is to limit their completely free time over the summer months. You can continue their education by providing educational activities and outings.
  • Pick out first day outfits. Your children will be nervous and excited on the first day of school. They may even want to spend more time on their appearance. You can help them look forward to the first day of school by picking out special outfits to wear. Help them dress for success by helping them choose the perfect outfit.
  • Shop for school supplies. Another activity that may get your kids excited about school is shopping for school supplies. Children sometimes have a specific list of items they’ll need. Let your child choose their own pens, paper and folders in their favorite colors.
  • Take a trip to school. Often, fear of the new experiences to come can swallow a child’s enthusiasm for the new school year. If your child is attending a new school, bring him to school a day before the first official day of class. That way, he’ll know what to expect and feel more relaxed on the big day.

The new school year can be an exciting time for all. Stress always goes along with new situations. But if you put these tips into practice, your children will be better prepared and may even look forward to the first day of school.

Visit us at Operation Letters to Santa for almost 1000 pages of Holiday Activities, Christmas Carols, Christmas Sheet Music, Holiday recipes, Free gifts and downloads and so much more!

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