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My Youngest Starts School. Wait, am I Supposed to be Sad?

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Boys Town Contributor
Mother of six-year-old daughter and five-year-old son

My Youngest Starts School. Wait, am I Supposed to be Sad?

Teachable moments can come from a wide variety of sources, including other parents. From time to time parents write blogs for us that we think you will find interesting, useful, or entertaining. Please enjoy this post from a fellow parent.

My baby started Kindergarten a couple of weeks ago. He is my second and last to go off to school. As I was leaving the school after drop off on the first day, I encountered other moms in the hallway fighting back their tears, I wondered if I should feel guilty that I’m not sad. Don’t get me wrong, I am completely shocked at how fast the last five years have flown by and how quickly my kiddos are growing, but if anything I am excited for him and this new opportunity.

This is the complete opposite of how I handled Kindergarten drop off for my oldest. She is the shy, introvert type. I had to pry her little fingers off my leg and walk away from her while she had tears rolling down her face, and I did too as I walked out of the building. She loves school now. But, with my son he was so ready and I was happy for him. Perhaps it was his extrovert personality, or the fact that his sister has been going to school for two years? Maybe preschool helped, or exciting back to school shopping, complete with a new Super Mario Brothers backpack? I’m sure it was a combination of things, but I feel fortunate that his love of school is off to a good start.

Routine adjustments at home have been a slightly different story. Whatever they do at school for those seven hours must be exhausting for my little guy. His teacher, who I love, keeps reminding us that school is a big change for these little people, even if they have been in daycare or preschool, it takes a toll on their minds and bodies and we have definitely seen it at home.

Enter the Back to School Contract. Last night I sat down with both my 2nd grader and Kindergartner and together we filled out the contract. Bedtime: 7:30, Wake-up time: 6:30. Out the door by 7:30. Reading time: 20 minutes. For the next month, we have agreed to no electronics during the school week. TV, iPad’s, and the like are all something they need to earn and since school is a big adjustment (and since the weather is still nice), we are going to skip that distraction at least until we can get back into a solid routine. I’m excited to see how this pans out. Watch for an update in a month!

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