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5 Tips for a Successful School Year

Set up tweens and teens for a successful school year by establishing healthy habits from the start! Here are five tips for a successful school year:

1. Get Enough Sleep

Teens and tweens need 9-9 1/2 hours of sleep each night due to the fact that at their age they are going through a second stage of cognitive development. Their brains are maturing and growing rapidly, just as they did as babies. They need extra sleep to support this brain growth as well as the physical growth that their bodies are undergoing.

We’ve all heard that our brains need time to process everything while we sleep. Imagine how much your teens and tweens are processing! Between their studies for school, their busy social lives, activities, and everything else…teens have a lot to process.

That rest time for the brain is important to support mental health and stave off anxiety and depression.

Please read my article about teens and sleep to learn more.

How to have a successful school year
Photo by Ben White on Unsplash

2. Start the Day with a Healthy Breakfast

Yes I know, it’s such a cliche. But cliches exist for a reason! Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and that’s especially true for kids. Teens and tweens have busy lives. They are physically active and have a ton of learning to do. Feed them well!

Send them off to middle school or high school with a breakfast that includes not only carbohydrates, but also contains protein and healthy fats.

Eggs are a great choice, as are all-natural sausages. Nut butters (or a handful of nuts) are a good source of both protein and healthy fats.

Smoothies are an easy way to get lots of nutrients in quickly – a terrific solution for fast-paced mornings. Try my Healthy Chocolate Protein Smoothie.

Muffins are a good choice if you have the right kind. Typical muffins are sugar bombs full of white flour and sugar. I have a couple of recipes for grain-free muffins that are high in protein and healthy fats – they will keep your teens feeling full with steady blood sugar. Here are some recipes for you to try:

Grain-free Pumpkin Spice Muffin

Grain-free Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

Easy Breakfast Veggie Scramble Three Ways

If your teen insists on cereal, then encourage them to use whole milk and maybe add some nuts or have some sausage or hard-boiled eggs on the side. The key is to keep their blood sugar even so that they aren’t hungry again in only an hour or two.

3. Use an Academic Planner to Keep Organized

An academic planner can help middle school and high school students organize their responsibilities and stay productive. Find a good one that has room for flexible planning as well as pages to help you study.

I have academic planners available in my Etsy shop that can help calm anxiousness about the school year. An organized planner can help maintain an organized mind.

Academic planner images from my Etsy shop

My planners are instantly downloadable PDFs that can be printed out again and again. The pages can be put in a binder or Happy Planner Big or you can print out pages individually and use them loose. It’s a flexible system that you can organize however you like.

Here are some things you might need to help you organize the planner:

You’ll need some nice heavier weight paper for printing if you want to print two-sided pages. This is my favorite paper:

If you prefer a physical planner (one that’s already put together for you) here are some great choices:

4. Have a Designated Space to Get Homework Done

Create a distraction-free zone for your teens and tweens to get their homework done. If there is room to have desk, that’s ideal.

No space for a desk? No worries. Help your student choose a good spot where they can focus. Ideally, a quiet space away from younger siblings would be helpful for concentration.

Space at the kitchen table or counter would work, or maybe there is a quiet corner in the living room or somewhere else in the house.

A lot of teens and tweens like to do homework in bed. That can work, but make sure that distractions are kept to a minimum so they can focus. A lap desk can help if they are going to use a bed or couch for a homework space.

5. Make Mental Health a Priority

Finally, my last tip for a successful school year is to make sure your teens and tweens are taking care of their mental health so that they don’t burn out.

We all know that this generation is suffering from new levels of anxiety and depression. Help your kids learn how to balance life.

Every day your kids need some time to relax and have downtime.

I have an article full of ideas for calming activities for tweens and teens. Take a look if you need ideas!

Thanks so much for reading! Please pin and share! If you have more tips for a successful school year, please comment below.

More articles that might help with a successful school year:

How to tell if your tween has anxiety

Why Your Family Needs More Healthy Fats

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