6 Ways to Help Your Child Thrive During the New School Year

Heading back to school doesn’t have to be overwhelming for you or your child.  Mighty Mommy shares 6 simple things you can focus on to help your child thrive during the new school year.

Cheryl Butler
6-minute read
Episode #441

As parents, we strive to do everything we can to help our children “kick off” their new school year with a positive and encouraging note.   We are the single most influential figures in our child’s life, so now is the time to get on board to ensure your child will have his best new school year ever. 

Heading back to school doesn’t have to be overwhelming for you or your child. With some preparation, consistent routines, a positive outlook, and lots of love and encouragement, you can help your child to navigate this transition with ease and enjoy a fantastic new school year.

Mighty Mommy shares 6 simple things you can focus on to help your child thrive during the new school year.

#1:  Encourage Your Child’s Passion

Let’s face it—most of us dream of raising a child who will change the world with an extraordinary contribution like finding the cure for cancer, inventing cars that run on water, fostering world peace, or maybe even concocting a chocolate that is actually nutritious, delicious, and able to eliminate wrinkles!

Look at Mark Zuckerberg, co-creator of the life-changing social networking site, Facebook. Many people wonder what was it about Zuckerberg’s childhood that gave him the creative mind to come up with such an incredible concept. In a recent interview with New York Magazine his father, Ed Zuckerberg, admits that he and his wife didn’t profess any special child-rearing skills. “The best I can say is that as parents, you can engineer the life you want your kids to have, but it may not be the life they want to have. You have to encourage them to pursue their passions. And you have to spend more time on them than you spend on anything else,” he shares.

Let this be the school year that your child’s creativity soars!  Start right from the first week of school,to begin engaging your child in tasks and conversation that will get his creative juices flowing.  Rather than strictly focusing on homework and all that needs to be done academically, make time to discover art, music, crafts, and other hands-on projects that could open up some new doors of exploration this school year.  See Also:  How to Overcome Homework Battles

#2:  Be a Playful Parent

Have you noticed how much fun your kids have when they're at play? Just because we're all grown up doesn't mean we have to miss out on some fun and frolic. One way to guarantee your kids will have a “fun”tastic new school year is to loosen up and put your playful foot forward!

One way to do this is to play games with your kids before homework and chores. They love spending time with you, especially when you join in on what they love to do. Some kids like outdoor, physical activities, while others prefer card games and board games. Some like to sit quietly and snuggle with you as you read a book together. Follow their lead.  Hide and seek is especially fun no matter how old your kids are. 

#3:   Routines

Ideally, you’ll have your child adjust back into “school routines” a few weeks before school actually begins. This can create a much smoother transition from “summer mode” back into school, rather than a rocky, rude awakening on the first day of school!

Routines help keep order and structure in your home (though your kids might never admit it), they also help kids thrive and keep them grounded. Consistency is the key with any new schedule, but the morning routine can really make or break your child’s daily success.

Morning routines set the tone for the whole day, so don’t wait until after everyone has overslept to get your morning routine under way, you’ll only set a frantic pace for the whole family which can easily leave you all feeling overwhelmed before you even get out the door. Successful routines take planning, though they needn’t be complicated and time consuming to put into place. 

Decide what time your family will be getting up each day and stick to it. Whether your family will be awaking to their own alarm clocks or to your motherly nudging, remember that an affectionate and pleasant “GOOD MORNING SLEEPYHEADS” is a nicer way for everyone to wake up to than you screeching “GET UP OR ELSE!” Make sure that your children are well-rested so they don’t oversleep and that you enforce work before play. In other words, no watching cartoons or playing video games until children are completely dressed, fed, and have all their school supplies ready.


All content here is for informational purposes only. This content does not replace the professional judgment of your own mental health provider. Please consult a licensed mental health professional for all individual questions and issues.

About the Author

Cheryl Butler Project Parenthood

Cheryl L. Butler was the host of the Mighty Mommy podcast for nine years from 2012 to 2021. She is the mother of eight children. Her experiences with infertility, adoption, seven pregnancies, and raising children with developmental delays have helped her become a resource on the joys and challenges of parenting. You can reach her by email.