Skip to content

5 Ways to Create a Healthy Back-to-School Routine This Year

Healthy habits  set children up for success inside and outside the classroom. With back-to-school season in full swing, it’s important to create routines that are easy to maintain throughout the entire school year—not just the first few weeks.

Help your family establish a healthy, manageable lifestyle by incorporating the following habits into your routine when school is back in session.

Plan Time for Hydration

Children are prone to dehydration faster than adults. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)  recommends that children drink six to eight glasses of water each day, depending on age, weight and gender.

To help your child stay energized throughout the school day, make hydration fun (and healthy) by packing colorful fruits and veggies as snacks in your child’s lunch. They provide nutrition and are excellent sources of water. After school, popsicles and slices of watermelon are refreshing—and flavorful—ways to boost hydration if your child wants something more than water.

MHS students going to school

Create Healthy Sleep Patterns

A  healthy sleeping routine is one of the most important parts of a healthy lifestyle. When children follow consistent sleeping patterns, they are more likely to be attentive and productive with their school activities.

If bedtime is a struggle every night, try developing a “pre-sleep” routine to help your child slow down from the day’s activities. Use an activity they enjoy, such as reading or listening to music, to create a calm environment. Reduce noise, block out light, and refrain from using electronic devices an hour before bedtime.

MHS student at lunch

Practice Positivity

If you’re looking for ways to increase communication with your child this school year, try creating a routine that promotes positivity each day. For example, dinner is a great time to ask your child to share three positive things that happened to them that day.

Children will follow your lead, so if you’re not sure how to get the conversation started, write down your favorite moment from the day.

When they hear you express your gratitude, it will spark some of their own ideas. This is a helpful way to stay in tune with social and emotional wellness.

MHS student home

Get Outdoors

Establishing an outdoor routine throughout the school year, especially when the temperatures are still warm, can help your child stay active and healthy. Plan a specific hour each day where your child can engage in free play activities outside. If you don’t have an outdoor space, something as simple as sitting on the porch and writing down observations about their surroundings can help boost their imagination and curiosity.

By reducing the time spent on electronics and replacing it with outdoor activities, your child will be more motivated when the school bells ring each morning.

Students playing outside

Make Homework Fun

Motivating your child to complete their homework each night may not always be an easy task. This year, try creating a special homework place to help them conquer their assignments. Work together to decorate and design a space that makes them feel comfortable and focused.

For younger children, try using charts and stickers throughout the year to encourage them to commit to their homework. Reward them with one of their favorite activities such as a trip to the park or a game night!

These simple ideas, combined with your love and support, can empower your child to maintain a healthy, long-term routine this school year.

Student completing homework

How are you helping students establish a healthy back-to-school routine? Share your ideas with us on Twitter!

Milton Hershey School does not discriminate in admissions or other programs and services on the basis of race, color, national or ethnic origin, ancestry, sex, religious creed or disability. Read important MHS policies on equal opportunity and diversity, equal employment opportunity, and more.