End of summer and beginning of the new school year

It all goes too quickly, but what a nice August we’ve had, and quite exciting too! Although the hype about the eclipse was a bit much for our area, it was nonetheless really interesting to see if you looked through the glasses. The fact that it didn’t get dark at all here in New York was a big disappointment to just about everyone, because the only way you actually knew it was happening, was by looking through the glasses. We all imagined a lot more drama, especially the kids.

So our children are either already back or going back to school after Labor Day. As I said, summer and vacations whizz by, and suddenly the days are getting longer and the evenings cooler. The stores and online outlets have been busy with back-to-schools shoppers filling those supply lists and buying new clothes for the new school year. The lists seem to get longer every year. I was remarking to friends the other day that I don’t recall my parents ever having to buy paper towels or tissues for the school. Supplies for us yes, but no supplies for the school or the classroom. Budgets, I guess.

In this issue there are a number helpful articles and columns about essential Back-to-School topics like homework help, packing school lunches, monitoring your child’s smartphone, strategies for spelling, and the return of cursive writing. We hope they will be helpful to your family and make your job a little easier.

Our writer Shnieka L. Johnson has written a piece on after-school care or extracurricular activities that complements the special section we present this month. For most working parents, it’s absolutely necessary to have good options that go beyond the 3 pm end of the school day. Even if it’s not, education and learning is not only about the subjects taught in the school classroom. Our children need many kinds of stimulation and exposure. There’s a lot to choose from and of course convenience and cost are part of the decision-making process.

Whether you have a child who’s starting school for the first time, entering a new school, or matriculating to a new grade, the word is NEW! New friends to make and new teachers to get to know, and a new schedule to get accustomed to. So exciting. Be sure to take lots of pictures and label them so years from now you will know where they were taken, when, and who’s in the picture.

Happy September. Wishing you all the best in this new school year!