Back to School: Finding Your New Normal
When schools went virtual in March, we adapted in hopes that the shift in schedule would only be temporary, and we were working under the assumption that schools would return to “normal” instruction in the fall. We could not imagine our homes becoming classrooms for the new school year but, to keep kids safe while continuing their learning, this is our new normal—at least for now.
Schools are not just where our kids go for education. Educators, peers, lessons, and schedules are what shape our kids– giving them exposure to new opportunities, social and emotional growth, friendships, knowledge and so much more. Parents may have some heightened anxiety and questions about how to facilitate the success of your kids whether they are working in a completely virtual setting, going to school in-person a few days per week, or in the classroom full time with new rules and guidelines. Educators are also making drastic changes in the way the teach and communicate. It may even you may feel like this is your first year all over again as you build new curricula to fit your students’ needs. We believe, however, that even though the classroom is new and different, the values that lead to success have not changed. Both adults and kids should practice ways to be adapt to these new situations, be flexible with schedules, discuss ways in which to be resilient when stressors are introduced, and work with intention towards goals, self-care, and balance. Attention to values such as these will help you move forward, and increased conversations can mitigate risky behavior—such as underage drinking. Join us for back to school! It is going to be different, but as we focus on these new classrooms while holding our values steady, we will make it through!
Parents, YOU are the #1 influence on your kids and the way they act and react to changes in both their schedules and environments; they are always listening and watching how you deal with day to day challenges. Now that some of you will be spending even more time together and some will be going to school in-person here are some great tips on how to make their learning experience meaningful and successful.
Great education focuses on the “whole child.” Social and emotional well-being is critical as kids navigate online learning, seeing their friends and maintaining social connections, as well as balancing screen time. Prioritizing mental health–not only for kids but for ourselves too—will be critical to success on and offline. Our friends at the Association for Middle Level Education and Classroom Champions have great platforms with resources to help kids be at their best this year.
Conversations are still the height of importance. Communication is key! Not just regarding underage drinking, but on a wide variety of topics. Mindfulness is one way to help your kids center themselves and be attentive to the needs of others. Do not forget, it’s the conversations you have throughout this school year that will make a lifetime of difference and as always, our resources are FREE to help you break the ice on more than just underage drinking.
We are wishing you the best, during this back to school season! Stay tuned for more activation’s, resource launches and more.