Back-to-school tips for parents and children

4 min read

Heading back to school after the summer holidays can always be a little nerve-wracking, but a lot of children may be feeling especially anxious if they’ve been away from the classroom for a prolonged period of time. 

Luckily, there are lots of things you can do at home to help ease your child’s worries and transform their nerves into excitement. Read on to discover how you and your child can prepare for school and get the year off to a great start. 

1. Familiarise your child with the ‘new normal’

Check your school for any new measures, such as social distancing or smaller class sizes, and chat to your child about how these may mean that their days may be a little different to what they’re used to. 

Explain that although the new rules may feel a bit strange to begin with, they’re designed to keep everyone happy and safe. Reassure them that their teachers and friends will be all joining in too, and that they’ll become used to them in no time. 

2. Jump back into a daily routine

Ease your child back into their school routine by reintroducing earlier wake-ups and bedtimes before school begins. Be sure to do the same in your own routine!

As with adjusting to a new timezone, this will help your child get back into a work mindset and make the transition into term much easier – in particular, so that waking up early on the first day of term won’t come as a nasty surprise.

3. Kick-start your learning 

Introducing a little learning into your days is a great way to refresh your child’s learning and fill any gaps in their knowledge, creating a solid foundation for them to build on in the year ahead.

The good news is that you don’t need to buckle down with mountains of books and wave goodbye to the last days of summer – just a few minutes of learning a day can do wonders! 

DoodleMaths is specifically intended for this purpose. Designed to be used for just 10 minutes a day, it revises tricky topics and introduces new areas, making it a great way for children to catch up and get ahead before the term begins. Best of all, you can try it for free! 

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Award-winning, personalised home learning programmes

Boost confidence and ability in primary school maths


Award-winning, personalised home learning programmes

Boost confidence and ability in primary school maths



4. Continue your family fun 

Whether it’s playing board games, having movie nights or heading to the local park for a picnic, carrying on with your fun family activities will help your child to relax while enjoying their last days of summer.

Try to continue these activities once term begins after school or at the weekend. This will allow your child to unwind and have fun while spending some quality time together as a family. 

5. Chat about any worries

If your child is particularly worried or nervous about starting school, seeing their friends for the first time in a while or having lots of new topics to learn, chatting to them about how they feel can be really helpful.

Encourage them to share how they’re feeling and reassure them that it’s perfectly normal to feel a little anxious sometimes. Sharing a smile and a hug really helps too! 

For more tips on how you can reassure your child, take a look at our tips for supporting your child’s wellbeing and our top 10 books for children who worry.

6. Stock up on stationery 

There’s nothing quite like a new pencil case brimming with colourful pens and pencils to get a child excited about returning to the classroom! 

Why not treat your child to some shiny new stationery or a rucksack featuring their favourite character for the year ahead? Your child will be so excited to show their friends their new stylish backpack that they’ll be counting down the days before school begins.

7. Get prepped the night before

So you’ve stockpiled enough stationery to last for years and have your new uniform prepared. Before you know it, it’s the night before school! 

Ask your child to lay out their uniform and help them to pack up and prepare everything they’ll need, including their pencil case, a water bottle and even a lucky mascot if they’re feeling a little anxious. 

Preparing any snacks or lunchbox items the night beforehand can also save you valuable time (and stress!) the following day. Simply label the items with your child’s name and pop them into the fridge so they can easily pick them up in the morning. 


With all of this in place, you’ll be set and ready to go! Don’t forget to take a photo of your child before they head off for their first day back at school. 



For more mathematical fun, DoodleMaths creates every child a personalised work programme tailored to their ability.

With over 20,000 interactive exercises to enjoy, DoodleMaths ensures progression through the curriculum and, most importantly, is lots of fun!

Article by Lucy Hart

Doodle empowers learners to achieve confidence in maths and English. Our intelligent technology creates individual work programmes which are motivational, affordable and convenient to use.