Settling Into A New School Year

This article first appeared in the October 2013 Colonial Crier. Here are some great tips to help students settle into the new school year.

Establish Healthy Routines Students need a good night’s sleep and healthy nutrition to keep their minds and bodies in peak condition. Start each day with a healthy breakfast, bring or order a healthy lunch and have a wholesome dinner.

The amount of sleep a child needs will vary according to the child’s age. However, ideal conditions would be for a student to go to bed early enough that he wakes up on his own, without an alarm. Having a “lights out” policy at nine or ten o’clock and putting internet routers on timers so they shut down at the same time, will help students sleep better without distractions. Remind students that it is rude to call anyone after 9:00pm. Enforcing this rule with friends will also avoid late-night interruptions.

The old saying, “you are what you eat,” is still true today. Students need healthy foods to fuel their growing bodies and brains. To maximize brain function, avoid “junk” foods and foods with food coloring or added sugar. These processed foods tend to prevent children from focusing and can cause hyperactivity. A diet of whole foods like fresh vegetables and fruits, grass-feed beef, fresh eggs and whole grains will give students a healthy advantage in the classroom.

Stay On Task JupiterGrades is a great tool for students and parents to stay on task. The calendar allows a quick snapshot of upcoming tests, quizzes and assignments.

Most grades are posted within 48 hours of the assignment or test. Teachers are given more time to grade larger projects and papers. When parents use JupiterGrades as a tool to help keep their students organized, grades improve.

Communicate Parents and students should receive our weekly Coming Events & Reminder and the monthly Colonial Crier, which is sent by email to middle and high school families. If you are not receiving these, please contact the school office.

JupiterGrades is also a valuable tool for parents. The Student Handbook and other resources are posted on the site. There is also directory of teachers’ and administrators’ email addresses.

Ask. If there is a policy you don’t understand or if you have even a small issue, please let us know. Both students and parents are encouraged to send an email or to tell the school secretary. It can’t be fixed if we don’t know about it.

 

Join Activities There are a lot of after-school sports and clubs for students to join. Participation in these

activities will broaden students’ horizons. However, don’t overdo it. Students need time to study and time to just “be kids.” Planning every waking hour of a student’s day can lead to burnout for both students and parents. Choose activities wisely. Allow students to focus on what they love to do and encourage them. University admission offices like to see extracurricular activities on applications but they would rather see a student excel in one area than be mediocre in twenty.