As evening temperatures begin to drop and our calendars scroll past the summer months, it’s time to turn our thoughts to preparing for the back-to-school routine. For children, this can mean new transportation schedules, teachers, classrooms, and coaches. For adults, however, it means coordinating purchases, events, routines, and calendars — all while managing the normal routines of business and home.
As your family and your professional caregivers get ready for back-to-school, let’s examine a few ways to make the transition easier for everyone involved:
One of the best ways to guarantee a smooth back-to-school transition for your child is to take the time each week to communicate clearly with your nanny. They only know what you tell them, and while this can seem frustrating occasionally, it’s an important fact to keep in mind. It’s typically better to over communicate in the interest of clarity than to under communicate in an effort to save time. Each week, spend a few minutes touching base with the nanny about any upcoming events in your child’s schedule, any days that you’ll be traveling or adjusting your work times, school trips, or any additional details that they may need to know. If there has been any confusion in the past, it may be best to also send this information by email or text message so that your nanny has the details to refer back to throughout the week.
Review the New Routine
The first few weeks of the school year can be overwhelming for everyone, so it’s important to take the time to review the new routine with your child and their caregiver. This review process can help your child memorize and adjust to their new morning, afternoon, and bedtime routines. Review the new routine with both the nanny and the child a few days before school begins, and then allow the caregiver to implement the routine. They’ll be responsible for carrying it out from day to day, so it’s important that your children learn to work within this system.
Implement a Behavior Management System
You may want to consider implementing a behavior management system in your home so that there are clear guidelines about the rules, what constitutes acceptable and unacceptable behavior, and what the consequences for unacceptable behavior are. This allows both caregiver and parents to enforce the system in the same manner, instead of the child seeing one as more strict and the other as more lenient.
Discuss Behavior Issues Early and Often
If your child has developed specific behavior issues, either at home or at school, it is important that you and the nanny discuss them in some degree of detail. Consider brainstorming ways to address the behavior in the home before it becomes a more serious issue. In general, keep the lines of communication open about your child’s behavior — both positive and negative — so that your nanny feels as though they can come to you with any issues that they have before those issues turn into major problems.
Use Technology to Assist You
If your family has a complicated schedule that changes frequently throughout the month, with multiple starting and ending times for work and school, it may be wise to create a shared online family calendar and include your nanny. Use an online calendar application that syncs with both of your phones for up to the minute information, and invite your nanny to any appointments that they’ll need to know about. Consider working together from the same grocery app or task list so that everyone knows which jobs have been handled and which still need to be completed. If you provide your nanny pocket money on a regular basis, utilize one of the many online applications that are available to send money quickly and easily, instead of attempting to juggle cash or checks. Automate pay with payroll software, so that you can handle the process with ease. Download a free 30 day trial here to see if this software is right for you.
Adjusting to the back to school routine can be complicated, but it doesn’t have to be overwhelming. With some careful organization and planning, you and your nanny can work together so that your child has a rewarding semester with as little stress as possible.