3 Tips for Handling the First Day of School

As millions of kids gear up for their first day of school, they're not the only ones who need to prepare. Here are 3 Modern Manners Guy tips for all you parents!

Richie Frieman
5-minute read
Episode #308

This week, Modern Manners Girl (aka, my daughter, Maddy) starts first grade. It’s a big deal. Seriously. And not just for her, but also for my wife and I, as parents.

Not only is it first grade (“I’m not in kindergarten anymore, Daddy!"), but we also just moved, so she’s at a new school filled with unfamiliar faces. Needless to say, in our house, we’re a wreck of emotions… well, everyone except for my daughter, that is.>

I'll admit, Modern Manners Wife and I are beside ourselves making sure our little girl has the best year ever. After all, she will be at this school for five years, and we want the first year to be awesome!

So, how do you make sure you keep your emotions in check, and still allow your child to have a proper first start? Well, grab the tissues with me, and check out my top 3 quick and dirty tips for first week of school etiquette.

Tip #1: Know the Routine

Instilling routines in children teaches them responsibility, and gives them a sense of pride in being able to accomplish tasks. My daughter inherited my wife’s knack for all things orderly, so when it comes to routines, she could double for a drill sargent. Since she digs routines, we wanted to educate her about what to expect when it comes to the first day and week of school.

However, my daughter brought up a good point not too long ago, when she asked, “How do you know what happens at my school, when you’ve never been there before, either?” Wow. She got us. That’s a very good point.

To be honest, I’d only been to the school once before, and that was to enroll her. I didn’t even go in the right entrance. My wife’s first time in the school was just the other night, for orientation. So how do you prepare for something you have no experience with? Well, my friends, you improvise.

As I said, we are new to the school, and since she’s our oldest child, this situation is new for everyone. However, even though we didn’t know what would happen once we stepped in the school, we still made sure my daughter knew as much about the school in general.

For starters, we went online and looked their website to learn as much as we could. We saw photos of the teachers and front office staff, and even learned the school’s history. We also drove her to the school, and spent some time walking around and playing on their playground. During our trip, we pointed out where the main entrance is and where the busses line up, and even saw other kids from the neighborhood on the playground.

Another bonus for us is that we have a friend who is a teacher at Maddy’s new school. She was kind enough to give us a rundown of how the school works. But if you don’t have a teacher in your back pocket, ask a fellow parent in the neighborhood for his her thoughts. Better yet, go on Facebook and post a status inquiring if anyone else is going into the same grade (but ask for private messages as responses.) You’ll be surprised what you can find out when you do your research.