Preparation For a Successful School Year

Returning to school is probably the last thing on your child’s mind during the joyful summer months.  However, preparation for school can begin in the summer months.

To have a successful school year, your child must be prepared in every sense of the word.  This includes having necessary supplies, setting up routines, and reducing potential worries about the new year.

Get your child ready for the most successful school year ever with our back-to-school preparation tips!

Gather school supplies

Some teachers send students’ families lists of supplies needed for the approaching school year.  Preparing for back-to-school means giving yourself plenty of time to shop for those items.  Having all the required supplies before school starts can help your child feel confident and ready for class.

When shopping, let your child pick their own items, within reason.  Unless specified by the teacher, allow them to select the colour of each folder, choose notebooks displaying their favourite characters, and decide between crayons or coloured pencils, for example.  Having a say in the specifics of these items can help your child get excited about returning to the classroom.

Create a routine

One part of the school mindset that gets lost in the blissful days of summer is having routines As the days of summer dwindle, consider easing your child back into a sense of structure.  This makes adjusting back to a school schedule a smooth transition.

Night routine – discuss with your child what time they will need to go to bed once school starts.  In the last days of summer, you can still allow them to go to bed slightly later than the “school night” time while bringing the bedtime closer to the desired hour each day.  Be sure to also review what the night routine entails, such as showering, brushing teeth, picking out the next day’s clothes, etc.

Morning routine – just like with the night routine, let your child know what time they need to be awake in the morning.  The wakeup time can be adjusted little by little as the first day of school approaches.  Review what needs to be done each morning and the time they must leave for school.  Knowing what is expected will help them feel prepared as they adjust to a “getting ready for school” schedule.

Though it may take time for your child to adapt to a routine, having this structure in place will help her prepare for back to school.

Ease anxiety

For some children, going to school after summer break can be a source of anxiety.  The nervousness may revolve around going to a new school or about entering a new grade with more challenging coursework than in previous years.

Another part of back-to-school preparation includes steps you can take to put your child at ease.

Visit the school – contact your child’s teacher or principal to arrange a day to stop by the school over the summer.  Explain that your child is feeling anxious about returning to class.  Seeing the classroom and possibly meeting with their teacher can reduce their worries or even transform those worries into excitement about the new year.

Read storybooks about school – read a heartwarming tale about a character’s experience at school to help calm your child’s nerves and spark joy about the new adventure ahead.  Regardless of your child’s age, there are books geared towards all grade levels to address children’s back-to-school troubles. Here are some fantastic options. 

Encourage your child to share thoughts – have your child lead a conversation with you where they can express their worries about school.  Address their specific concerns and let them know that it is normal to feel nervous before entering a new grade but that you know they’ll do great.  Then, have them tell you what they are looking forward to in the new school year.  Changing your child’s perspective to focus on the positive aspects – learning new topics, making new friends, etc. – can make them excited for the academic year.

Oftentimes, it is the fear of the unknown that will make your child anxious about school.  Easing fears takes time and effort, but it is possible to raise a mentally strong child who can overcome anxiety by trying some of the steps listed above.

There is a good chance that once they return home after their first day, the fears will have lessened or even vanished, and they will be happy to be in school.  To help your child get into an excited mindset about school, download and print our Back-To-School Bingo activity.


Preparing your child for the new school year takes mutual effort from you and your child.  If their supplies and assignments are ready for the first day, if night and morning routines are put into action, and if their worries are put to rest, they will be on track for a successful school year!


Aha! Parenting. “Preparing Your Child for the New School Year.” 2022. Retrieved 16 June 2022.

Scholastic. “8 Tips to Prepare for the First Days of School.” 2022. Retrieved 16 June 2022.

The School Run. “Helping Your Child Get Back Into a School Mindset.” 2022. Retrieved 16 June 2022.