Before the School Bell Rings
CMB’s education partner, Liberty University, has provided some resources to share with your listeners for back to school. If you are interested in audio and social resources, including back to school prayers to encourage your listeners and use across your platforms, please visit Liberty.edu/CMB for additional resources.
Each year we find ourselves confronted with a recurring cycle of time-warped perspectives concerning our summer calendar. Only three days into summer break and the children have already devoured the entire summer snack stash, misplaced all the integral pieces to the board games, borrowed the car and drained the gas tank, and somehow managed to make an irresistible case for multiple-hour screen time sessions. We become a bit perplexed wondering how our stickered bucket list will serve us during the summer heat. Nevertheless, as fall approaches, we can’t believe how the last 10 weeks have flown by. Now we just seek to find time to “get it all together” before the school bell rings – but don’t stress! We’ve got helpful tips to give you a head start on your back-to-school prep!
Preparing the home:
- Calendar: Order that calendar that’s been in your online cart and start filling in activities, school breaks, and recurring events. It is especially helpful to mark off various institutional breaks to coordinate college visits with family vacations and celebrations. We highly suggest adding one of Liberty University’s College For A Weekend events to your fall schedule. It is a a weekend your family won’t forget!
- Closets: Take time to organize the pieces of each child’s wardrobe, determining what still fits and what needs to be replaced. Make a list and use it on a fun shopping outing with each child. This is a great way to spend some one-on-one time before the start of the school year.
- Workstation: Designate a space for each child for online schoolwork or homework. Gather needed supplies provided by the school or teacher and involve your child in sprucing up their area with fun containers and individualized décor. Additionally, remember to assist your college-bound child as they begin packing for dorm life. Check out this list from Liberty University for inspiration.
Preparing the body:
- Sleep: As the first day of school approaches, we suggest spending the week prior limiting screens before lights out and encouraging earlier bedtimes. This will help set a natural rhythm as students get ready for more regimented days.
- Focus: Taking a couple of months off from focused brainpower is what summer break is all about, but now is the perfect time to start getting the mind used to quieter, more stilled entertainment. Print out various book lists from 5th-grade summer reading to Freshman English 101 and get a head start on reading chapters. Consider it a stimulation detox as your family prepares for the mental shift needed to attend to schoolwork.
Preparing the heart:
- Challenges: Have an open discussion with your children about potential challenges they might face this year. Relational struggles, workload stress, emotional regulation, and separation anxiety are all issues that can be combated with Scripture. Help your child arm themselves with verses that will give them the tools needed to overcome and grow in areas of weakness.
- Relationships: We know how important choosing friends is for our future, especially for our kids as they become increasingly independent. Whether your child is headed off to school outside of the home, participating in an online school like Liberty University Online Academy (LUOA), or embarking on their first year in a dorm, it is vital to educate them about the influence of friends, both online and in real life.
As we start thinking ahead and implementing a few early strategies to ease the transition into more structured days, remember to enjoy every second of the last days of summer with your children. Creating cherished memories, engaging in outdoor activities, and getting extra sleep are valuable elements that will prepare our families for the school year to come.