Archive for December, 2010

Whether your student is starting a new semester right after the New Year’s holiday or finishing the first semester and facing final exams, it will be most helpful to take at least 3 or 4 days to taper back into the eating and sleeping patterns of the normal school day and week.

Most of us have stayed up later (sometimes a whole lot later) than the usual weekday times we are used to. The body’s Circadian (sleeping and waking) rhythms can get very off track if we vary our normal sleep patterns more than 2 hours from the usual. While a performance drop will usually not be noticable during the holidays it is still likely to be there. If you are doing very different activities from your usual ones it is easy to overlook the fact that you or your child are not your usual self. We get caught up in the holiday events and may not notice we are feeling a little tired. Or we may just be so pumped by all the excitement and festivities we are not feeling tired until the end of the day.

The important thing to remember is to ease your student back into the routine sleeping time 3 or 4 days in advance of returning to school.

Best of luck to all for a happy, productive and stress free second semester!

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Why is the 2nd semester of 5th grade such and important time in a child’s development? The big jump is coming! That leap from the cozy classroom of the 5th grade will seem like a distant memory when your chld hits the hallways of the new middle school. The noise, the confusion, the complexity. While most of today’s middle schools put a valiant effort into smoothing the way for 6th graders, it is often at the beginning of this transition grade that any issues a child has with organizational skills will quickly come screaming to the forefront.

As your student goes through the second half of the 5th grade year it is a pivotal point in the level of self confidence s/he will have going into the new environment next year. If s/he can perform well and consistently, doing things is a relatively organized way, there will be a foundation of both confidence and skills to fall back on in the new middle school environment.

This is a critical time to foster the development of habits of operating in an organized manner. Do you know where your books are? Did you turn in the book report on time? Did you tell Mom about the posterboard you need for tomorrow before or after dinner? (This would be the same posterboard the teacher told you to get 3 days ago.) If you would like some help organizing the papers that have to go back and forth to school each day start looking for a system that will automate and organize the papers for the student. One such system is the Pace-It Instant Organizer Notebook System.

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