The school year starts in January in south Africa which means there are lots of babies, toddlers and kids getting ready to start school for the first time. Adjusting to the new routine is going to take time, regardless of how old your child is.
It is possible to make the transition easier for your children
Prep your children, even your little ones. Don’t underestimate your children, start talking to them about their new school and new routine. Explain to them what is going to happen, who will be dropping them, fetching them etc. This allows older children to ask questions and feel more secure about what is happening.
Start adjusting your routine before school starts. Don’t let the morning school starts be the first morning you try get everyone ready and out the door on time. Start getting up earlier if you need to, pack bags/lunches and slowly adjust their wake-up times if necessary.
Make sure the kids are getting enough sleep. If your toddler is starting school, make sure they get to bed early, so they can get enough sleep. This will make the mornings easier if you toddler wakes up without being woken up.
Get up before everyone else. Waking up an hour before everyone else can make a huge difference. It allows you to get ready but also gives you some quiet time. If you are ready before your children, then you can focus on them without the distraction of also trying to get ready.
Do what you can the night before. Pack bags and lunch boxes the night before. Get out clothes for everyone. You can even prep breakfast depending on what your family eats. Meals like overnight oats or muffins work well.
Don’t switch the TV on. Limit distractions in general until everyone is ready to leave the house. It might seem like putting the TV will help you get things done but it will be harder to get kids to focus on eating or getting dressed if they are watching TV or playing on their tablets.
Most importantly give yourself and your children time to adjust.