APPS, TIPS AND ADVICE
As summer days slip away and the new school year begins, it might be time to start getting your youngsters ready for the classroom.
Lisa Campbell, of Canton, said for her, the summertime is low-key, so getting her two children, James, 13, an eighth-grader, and Frankie, 11, a sixth-grader, ready for school isn’t that hard. They attend the Arts Academy at Summit.
“I try to keep our summers as schedule-free as possible,” she said. “Summer is for playing and chilling out.”
As a result, she usually waits until the weekend before school starts (this year, Canton City Schools will start in mid-August) to get her children geared toward starting back.
During the summer, she lets her children stay up until 10 p.m., with lights out by 11. However, the weekend before school starts, they will go back to school hours.
“During the school year, our goal is to be in our bedrooms at 9 p.m., and lights out at 9:30,” said Campbell, who is a kindergarten teacher for Genoa Elementary School in Perry Local School District. She explains that means no TV or electronic games as of 9. “That may change a little this year because the kids are getting older, but for now, that is what we are going with. That is my preference.”
Other than that, she said, she does not have any set rules for going back to school.
As a teacher, Campbell said, she probably should make them read more, but she does not force it on them.
“When I grew up, we never had to do a single thing during the summer,” she said. “I don’t force reading during the summer because I want them to read because they enjoy it, not because they are made to.
“I would be stricter about preparing them for school, but my children are good students,” she said. “If they weren’t, I would have more structure in terms of preparing them for the year ahead.”
Campbell said every home is different on how the children are prepared for going back to school.
• A few weeks before school starts, move bedtime back to an earlier time.
• Put a positive spin on going back to school. Talk about the fun things your child will learn, the old friends he or she will see and the new friends he or she will make.
• If your child is anxious about starting the next grade, reassure him or her that other children have these feelings too.
• Do not make plans for big trips right before the start of school.
• Establish school-day schedules for homework, TV, baths and bedtime.
• Arrange play dates with friends from school to re-establish connections that may have been dropped for the summer, or to create new ones.
• Re-establish school routines, getting your child up and dressed at the same time as if he or she were in school.
• Nurture independence by talking to him or her ahead of time about new responsibilities he or she may have during the school year.
• Set up a time and place for homework to be done.
• Make establishing a routine a family affair by sitting down with your child and talking about expectations, keeping in mind the more ownership the child has in setting up his routine, the more he will follow it.
• Stick to a routine, including bath, pajamas and brushing teeth.
• Limit the electronic stimulants by not allowing children to use the computer or watch TV at least an hour before bedtime. These activities can be stimulating and can interfere with falling and staying asleep.
1. Need to cite a book? The EasyBib app does all the work. Just scan the bar code on the book, and EasyBib saves the citation.
2. Google Drive and 3. Dropbox are cloud-based apps that keep your notes and assignments with you wherever you go.
4. Duolingo turns learning another language into a game.
5. MyHomework Student Planner (Android) and iStudiez (iOS) are planner apps designed to keep schedules, assignments, deadlines, study groups and grades organized.
6. CourseSmart is your key to 7,000 textbooks on your iPhone. The books cost about half of the print version, but there’s no way to resell or keep them past the subscription period.
7. Evernote keeps all of your notes, voice memos and photos together online for free. All of your information can be accessed later from the app or website. You can search through and tag notes.
8. Make flash cards, which can include sound clips or YouTube videos, using gFlashPro. Share and download premade decks of flash cards from the directory.
9. Better than the iPhone’s calculator but not quite as elaborate as Texas Instruments graphing calculators, the Graphing Calculator app has the ability to graph multiple equations and email them.
10. The MyHomework app color coordinates your assignments by due date, while also syncing to your desktop computer to keep everything organized.
11. Carry a dictionary and thesaurus with you everywhere you go with the Dictionary.com app. The best part? It’s free.
12. Who needs a folder when you have the Documents to Go app? Sync and view Microsoft Office files and PDFs on your phone to view anytime. You can create documents using it as well. Sources: cnet.com, Time.com
APPS FOR PARENTS:
1. Get a refresher in math, English and other subjects to help you study with your student using the School A to Z app.
2. Whether you need to manage your to-do list or send a voice memo to your kids, Evernote lets you do it all. Everyone has access to the notes on all devices.
3. Borrow e-books from a selection of public and school libraries with OverDrive Media Console.
4. Organize your children’s sports schedules, contacts for other players’ parents, stats and other important information using Team Snap.
5. Want to find the best deal when back-to-school shopping? Use RedLaser to scan items’ bar codes, and it will compare prices to show you the best deal.
6. Register your child’s cellphone, and Life360 Family Locator will track him or her on the map.