Back to school time is always extremely hectic and brings back a whole new set of problems for families with school-age children. Their kids all suddenly need school supplies, new clothes, and have a plethora of activities to sign up for and start.
Between homework, playdates, music lessons, sports, family time, downtime, and sleep, children can easily get overwhelmed during the start of the school year. And so can parents, After the summer, families aren't ready to be on the go constantly yet they seem to be.
A majority of families now have two working parents which leads to busier days for everyone. In some instances, kids need care before school starts early in the morning and after school making for a long day. Tack an extra activity a few days a week and that can be a lot for anyone to handle.
Even kids who don't need before and after school care can be overscheduled with activities creating an issue. It's important to not overdo it and know when to draw the line. Kids need to be bored. They need to lay around. They need to have free moments to imagine and spend alone learning how they are. From boredom comes creativity. Consider focusing on only one or two extra activities per season for each kid.
As a parent, you know how hard it is to schedule around your child and how you're also trying to balance your own life. Finding a work/life balance as a parent is nearly impossible and some things got to give. Don't worry your kids will agree with you. If you're feeling stressed about getting your kids to and from activities, and who much they cost, that's a great sign to back down. And if you're stressed out, chances are so are your kids.
Make family time a priority. This time is truly precious and will not last forever. Protect at least one night a week and time on the weekend for just the immediate family. Have a movie night, go out to eat, do a family game night, anything that gets everyone connected together in a positive way.
Don't live life as a competition. The old saying "Keeping up with the Jones'" applies today and is especially strong with social media where everyone seems to show off all the amazing things their family is doing. Forget about other people and focus on yourself and your own family.
While doing all things that busy families do, make sure to pay attention to your children and make sure they're doing ok. If they aren't responding well to be on the go all the time, cut back. Overscheduling is a real problem for today's children. Let them be kids and just play sometimes.