After a long summer of relaxing, days out and enjoying themselves, it can be difficult for your child to get back into the mindset they need for returning to school.
To help your child get off to the best start in the new school year, it’s important to start preparing them for a new routine before they go back – otherwise, your kid’s focus and concentration may suffer.
Here are a few ideas for what you can do to help improve your kids’ focus and concentration ahead of the new term:
1. Get Organised Together
There can be a lot to remember when it comes to getting your child ready for another year of school; you need to buy new uniform and PE kits; buy an adequate amount of stationery (and extras for when it gets lost), and make sure everything else is in order. If your child isn’t prepared to go back to school and they don’t have the right equipment, it may affect their focus and ability to learn.
To ensure you can give your child the best start to the school year, sit down with them and discuss what they need and whether there’s anything you may have forgotten.
2. Encourage A Good Night’s Sleep
After weeks of later nights and mornings, it’s understandable that your child may not be looking forward to going back to earlier starts.
A lack of sleep can hamper your child’s ability to concentrate, and tiredness may mean they struggle to focus. To remedy this, you should consider asking your child to go to bed earlier and waking them up at around the time they would normally be getting ready for school for the final week of the summer holidays. This way, the early start won’t be quite as unpleasant on their first day back.
3. Create a Quiet Space for Homework
One of the things your child won’t be looking forward to about going back to school is the homework.
To make the reintroduction of homework as painless as possible, work with your child to minimise any distractions and create a quiet space for them to study in.
Your child’s bedroom probably isn’t a good place for them to do their homework due to all the distractions, but sitting at a dining or kitchen table (where you can easily supervise) may make focusing much easier.
Another thing to consider is how long your child is spending on their homework. If you allocate a specific time to doing homework, such as an hour straight after school, it will help your child focus on the task at hand. Likewise, using incentives like watching TV may encourage your child to concentrate on their homework.
4. Make Sure They’re Eating Healthily
The right breakfast can set your child up for the entire day. Skipping breakfast or eating the wrong types of food can affect a child’s ability to concentrate and focus.
Ask your child to see what healthy choices they’d like for breakfast, such as a smoothie or porridge. Remember that foods rich in minerals and vitamins will help your child remain focused. Foods such as bananas, green tea and eggs are ‘slow-release energy foods,’ which provide sustained energy and can help your child stay focused for longer.
Healthy breakfasts to aid focus and concentration include:
- Eggs, e.g. an omelette or scrambled eggs on toast
- Porridge or overnight oats
- A smoothie
- Yoghurt with fruit and nuts
You also need to consider what your child will eat for lunch too to help maintain their levels of focus and concentration until home time.
When you’re thinking of what to serve your child for lunch, remember that foods rich in vitamin D3, like egg yolks and tuna, are amongst the best to boost levels of concentration.
Some tasty, vitamin-packed lunch ingredients include:
- Hard-boiled eggs
- White meat, like chicken and turkey
- Raw vegetables, e.g. carrot sticks or cucumber
- Fruit, including dried fruit
5. Explore Supplements
If you think your child may struggle to focus on their return to school, Garden of Life offers Organic Attention/Focus Kids Chewables, which feature vitamins C from organic fruit and whole food vitamin D3. These chewables are designed for children aged 4 and older and should be taken with food.