Don’t Quit! Spring Ahead To Finish The School Year Well

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Don't Quit! Spring Ahead To Finish The School Year WellLike us, you might be wrapping up spring break — it’s been so nice to get out of the rut and routine of a rigid school schedule. The thought of returning to alarms and deadlines isn’t fun or welcome, but here we go.

With spring weather and spring sports, there are lots of distractions from the the assignments and standardized tests facing our students. How can we help them stay on track to finish the school year strong?

Work Consistently. This one commitment will save you so much stress and turmoil. Often, there are long-term projects that will be due toward the end of the school year. It’s so easy to put of the work but don’t let that happen to your student. The weight of stress that will be carried isn’t worth the price of procrastination!

Prioritize. It won’t take long to find out what is going to come easily and what will require more attention. It won’t take long to realize that there is so much happening between now and the end of the school year that not everything can get our attention. Determine what is most important and what projects/grades need the most focus. A quiz tomorrow might not carry as much weight as an ongoing project that could be initiated now.

Enlist Support Early. When you begin early, you will identify areas that demand extra support. It may look like formal tutoring or it may simply finding an online game. Where you need help, go ahead and get the support in line so that you can access the best resources.

Take Breaks. Once you have established that you are working regularly, found support where needed and have gained momentum, then you are free to take a breaks. Plan a day trip for the time off at Easter. Get outdoors on a bike or skates. Plant something that will bloom this summer. Cook a fresh recipe together. Taking a break refocuses the brain so that you aren’t burning out on material that is draining.

Set Boundaries. At the same time that I support a break, we also have to be clear about getting back to business. Having a set time for homework, like before dinner and after snacks, helped to create rhythm and routine. For younger kids establishing reciprocal rules helps to be clear with expectations. An example might be: No video games until the homework is done or 30 minutes of reading before turning on a screen.

Plan to Celebrate! No matter the outcome, you will get to the end of a this school year. How can you mark the moment and reward the hard work? Plan an outing (the zoo, an activity in Pigeon Forge?) or a gift for hard work. Use this as motivation when it gets tough to keep going by sticking a picture on the fridge or bathroom mirror.

Spring is full of promise and expectation — it’s a season of renewal and reminder of the cycles of life that make all things new. Just when we want to turn from the requirements of school schedules, it becomes a critical time for our kids in school. Spring fever is real but you can set the tone for success as we finish the school year well.

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