Having regular breaks and holidays from school is very important for students, they need a rest just like everyone else. They provide an opportunity to unwind, reflect and recharge in preparation for the next term. Juggling classes, school work, co-curricular activites, hobbies, homework, socialising and everything else can be very taxing on boys in today’s world. Breaks give boys the opportunity to follow a much less demanding schedule so they can sleep in, play, relax and catch up.
Whilst this time is necessary and should be enjoyed, boys can quickly get out of routine. Late nights, treats and a more relaxed state of mind mean that boys can really struggle when that Monday morning alarm goes off on the first day of term. Routine is important for boys as it makes their lives organised, predictable and helps them to feel safe and comfortable.
Here are four tips to get your son back into the school routine whilst making the most of his break.
A good day starts with a good night’s sleep. At least eight hours a day is recommended for children, but this can differ depending on their age. Boys need the energy to focus throughout the school day and a good night’s sleep better prepares them for their busy day. Towards the last few days of the holiday, parents should reintroduce earlier bed times that get earlier each day so boys become accustomed to their usual earlier bedtime. This slower transition helps them adjust to their usual routine and ensures they are refreshed and ready for day one.
2. Bedtime routine
As well as a set bedtime, parents can reintroduce, or take the opportunity to begin, a bedtime routine to signal that it is almost time for bed and help boys prepare for the next day. This could include; a bath, a story or reading time, playing soft music, getting dressed into pyjamas, brushing teeth, setting out their uniform and packing their school bags. It is a great time to have some one-on-one time with your son and to talk about the next day’s events.
It is important to teach boys organisation as this is a vital life skill they will need to master and utilise throughout life. Boys will have tasks and activites that they need to complete during the school evenings each week. Help your son to get into a good organisational routine by making lists and using calendars. He can review what activites he has and when, and can make a calendar to reflect this. He can also write lists of things to do, like his process before bed. This will help him engage with his school routine and will mentally prepare him.
During the school holidays, boys tend to indulge in more treats and eat at different meal times. Having a healthy and nutrious diet is important in fuelling your son for a full school day to enable him to concentrate. Re-establish routine by ruling out certain treats and resetting breakfast and dinner times. Get your son involved, ask him what he would like to eat and replace unhealthy snacks with healthier alternatives. Make him part of the lunch and breakfast-making process. This way he can take some responsibility and control. Baking together during the holidays is a great bonding activity and can help develop healthier eating habits.
Children respond positively to routine and need it in their daily lives. Take the last few days of the holidays to help your son transition back to school in a relaxed, comfortable and organised manner. He will appreciate the routine as he tackles another term at school and will be better prepared to take on challenges and reach his potential.
A Trinity education seeks to engage the mind, body and spiritual development of all our boys. To discover the Trinity difference, and why we’re one of Sydney’s leading schools for boys, download our prospectus.