It's time for middle school students to sign up for next year's classes. Your child will likely have to choose an elective, or possibly two electives, for next year's schedule. Make sure your child chooses an elective that he or she is truly interested in studying. It might be tempting for your child to sign up for a class that his best friend is in, so encourage your tween to be brave enough to pick a class that works for him.
Also, know that some electives have prerequisites, so think a little about elective options for next year, and the year after.
Middle schoolers often have the chance to take advanced classes, or high school level courses, while still in middle school. Taking a high school level course can give your tween a head start on high school requirements, and the experience can also help your child become a better or a more dedicated student.
But not every tween is ready for advanced classes, so be sure you and your child take the time to discuss what the class requirements and expectations are, before you sign up. Also, be honest about whether or not your child's busy schedule will allow him to devote enough time to a demanding course.
I can't believe how close we are to summer break. Before we know it students will be coming home with report cards in hand, and all of the belongings from their locker. Better get ready.
There's still time to book a summer camp, plan a family vacation or staycation, and make the most of the summer months. I'm still looking for bargains on sunscreen and bug spray, and sadly, I think it's time to replace our beach towels.
The list of to dos gets longer every day. Glad I started this now, and didn't wait until after Memorial Day.
More on Tweens and Summe
Middle school can be a frustrating transition for tweens as they take on more and more academic responsibility. As frustrating as it can be, it's so important that your child develop certain academic skills, such as prioritizing and keeping up with assignments without your help. He'll need these skill in high school (and beyond) so now's the time to develop them.
Of course, it can be difficult for parents to know when to take charge ("Do your homework now!") and when to back off. If you're unsure about how involved you should be, try this. Give your child the chance to tackle his work on his own without your interference. If he does it, give him even more space to continue to develop his skill set. If he doesn't, you know you need to remain involved a little longer -- but continue to encourage him to take the lead.
The school year is more than half-way over and I only just discovered that my daughter's school does indeed have a school store. I wish I had known this sooner -- it would have saved me several late night trips to the drug store for school supplies.
I admit I never asked my child if the school had a store, and I never saw the mention of one on the school website or in eblasts. Still, it would have been worth my time to check it out before now. The upside: I've learned my lesson and from now on I'll make sure my child has a few extra dollars in her backpack for those last minute and much needed school supplies.
Change isn't always easy, and if your tween will be going to middle school for the first time in the fall, it pays to think about how his or her life will change. Friendships might end, responsibilities will increase and there will opportunities your child probably never thought about before.
The upside of all these changes is they will prepare your child for high school, and believe it or not, that's only a few years away.
Summer camp can be the highlight of your child's summer vacation, but there are a few common problems that might arise while your child's away. The good news is many of these challenges are avoidable, if you know to expect them and prepare your child to deal with them should they interfere with camp fun.
Be sure you discuss weather, the camp menu, homesickness and your child's schedule long before you drop him off at camp. A little preparation now will pay off later, and help your child enjoy the experience of summer camp.
If you're considering sending your tween to camp this year, but don't know which camp to pick, attending a camp fair can be just the event you need. A camp fair is one-stop shopping for local camps, both day and overnight camps. The fair allows you to visit each camp booth, and ask questions of the camp representative. Bring a notebook and pen, and get there early, before the crowds begin.
Spring really just started, but I know now is the time to get ready for summer. I have to find a summer camp for my youngest, begin planning our family vacation, and start clipping coupons for sunscreen and bug spray. Lots to do. Oh, and between work and the kids' schedules, I have to find time to plant my summer vegetable garden. No worries, though. I'm starting early this year so I know that by the time summer kicks in, I'll be ready.
That's the idea, anyway.
You might be on the fence this year about allowing your child to attend summer camp. Maybe camp tuition isn't in the family budget, or maybe you're unsure if your child will enjoy the experience and if you'll get your money's worth out of it all. If you're unsure about camp, don't be too quick to strike it off the summer to-do list. Attending summer camp has many benefits for tweens, including learning independence, making new friends, and finding new interests, passions, talents or hobbies.
Think about it, and then begin your research. Camperships may help lower the cost of camp tuition, and many camps offer family plans or reduced tuition based on financial need. Don't wait too long to make your decision, popular camps fill up quickly, and it's no fun to find yourself on a waiting list.