As August winds down, back to school season starts to take on more and more of its annual dress. Staples commercials abound and the stores at the malls are getting flooded with back to school and autumn fashions. So you just got your kids their allotment of clothes and even got a head start on buying their back to school books and supplies. The question is now: how do you get your children’s minds ready for back to school?
Back to School
Back to school is a big time event in the life of any children. Not only are kids generally excited to see their friends again on a regular basis, but also they can look forward to getting back into a regular routine, which all children, especially teens, so desperately need. Granted, the late nights and easy frivolities of the hot summer will be given up, but the daily structure that elementary and high school classes and activities bring should be welcome solace to both parents and student alike.
Now is a good time for your children to start getting not just their back to school wardrobe and backpacks ready, but their minds too. Too often during the summer grade slide, kids fall into bad habits: too much internet and cell phone, not enough intellectual stimulation. As such, the brains go a bit soft, and the adjustment to school is difficult. Just like any other muscle in the body, the brain needs to be worked out regularly. Playing only video games and talking and chatting via text and Skype do not qualify as sufficient mental exercise.
Good Mind Exercise
There are many ways that your kids can get their minds ready for school, and fun ways at that. Have them do things like the puzzles, board games, or crossword puzzles. Why not buy a brainteaser book and challenge your son or daughter to solve some of the problems? Give them some incentives. For example, give them some kind of reward for each brainteaser they solve. These incentives could be of monetary or other remunerative value. Perhaps you can offer incentives in some other way, perhaps by extending certain privileges.
Some other interesting approaches include joining your teens to Lumosity, which is a website full of brain training exercises. These are both fun and extremely entertaining; moreover, these exercises are scientifically designed to improve both cognitive and mental function. This program will provide your teens with an edge to starting school and even keep them sharp all the year through. Stanford and Harvard researchers collaborated with the founders of this website to create games that stimulate and activate brain cells toward higher mental achievement.
Reading Never Fails
Of course, reading can never fail your child. There are many books that could be recommended for back to school reads and reading does more than just build solid vocabularies. According to Ken Pugh, PhD, a director of a research institute dedicated to the science of language, reading keeps your mind both sharp and nimble. So take that drive down to the local bookstore, or better, plan a day at the library to pick up some really good reads for your children. Insisting that 20 to 30 minutes per day be spent reading is a solid way to develop beneficial habits in your children. Be clear in explaining that the time invested in such an activity will pay dividends over a lifetime. For one, your children will never be subject to being bored as they will always be able to use down time to pick up that latest read.
Following some of the suggestions to get your children’s minds ready for back to school is more than just important in creating wholesome and productive future members of society. Too many kids today get lost in the shuffle of peer pressure and other negative influences. Seeing that your children get good guidance and good preparation for back to school will only insure their eventual success. And part of this is good mind stimulation. Toward this end, the time you invest now as parents will certainly be well worth it, as later on you will less likely have to deal with young adults who find themselves lost in a difficult world because of prior lack of preparation.