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5 Tips for a Successful New Term at School

5 Tips for a Successful New Term at School 150 150 Lulu

5 Tips for a Successful New Term at School

  1. Get a good night’s rest for you (mums, dads, carers) and your little ones. Regardless of your children’s age, they still need a good bedtime routine.  10-12 hours for under 11’s, 7-9 hours for 11-18’s. Sleep is crucial for our mental health, cell regeneration, and growth.
  2. Record your favourite shows, if you can, and watch them at the weekend- use your weekdays to focus on work, routines and school-run stuff. This helps to lower resentment towards yourself, your children, spouse.
  3. Invest in a travel mug; summer is about to bid us goodbye, and we will soon hear the crunch of leaves under wellingtons. So having a travel mug means having your favourite hot drink on the go. We love going to Autumn park to collect leaves, play in the mud, and splash in puddles, but endless trips to coffee shops can add up, especially if you have not set a budget. I am not against it in any way; I love cheeky chai now and then. However, I am saving so much time and money by just investing in a travel mug that I love and heading over to the park.
  4. Invest in a good brand of vitamin D; this mood-boosting sunshine vitamin will support low moods and lethargy, some people suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder-Overview – Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) – NHS (, and this can kick in as soon as the days begin to look a little more grey.
  5. Be kind to yourself and others– this may seem obvious, but mums can be incredibly mean as a group. Sometimes it is unintentional; sometimes, it is NOT. I deal with others the way I deal with myself; I am firm and fair. Kind and honest. But I will not allow people to disrespect me; I value my mental health too much to let people walk over my family or me. I will say to you what I tell myself every day- be kind, be fair, be honest, be beautiful, be at peace, but if you so choose to be ugly, to be mean, to be scornful, to be hateful, to be spiteful, to take advantage of kind-hearted people- then do it with your chest.

In summary, get a good night’s rest, record your favorite shows, invest in a travel mug, invest in a good brand of vitamin D and CHOOSE be kind to yourself and others.

Can you choose at least one item from the list that you will implement today?

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Have a fantastic start to the new term and make the most of every day,

you are special, valuable and there is no one else like you.


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5 Tips on how to improve the reading habits of young readers @home and long journeys.

5 Tips on how to improve the reading habits of young readers @home and long journeys. 150 150 Lulu

5 Tips on how to improve the reading habits of young readers @home and long journeys: 

  1. Use image rich texts (devices are great for reading stories too).
  2. Become a “talking family.”
  3. Use subtitles with ALL screen time.
  4. Look out for how words are used. 
  5. Keep using your home language.
  1. Use image rich texts

The idea behind this is you want to provide as much stimulus as possible for young readers, which will help them to develop their imagination and learn new words. Ask your children questions like these:  

  1. A) What can you see in the picture?
  2. B) How does it make you feel?
  3. C) What are they doing?

Be really specific about what you are describing, for much younger readers, they may not have all of the vocabulary (yet), but don’t worry about it- just tell them if they do not know it. Like this: 

“I can see a little, dark brown dog.”  

They will eventually start mirroring your use of language. Devices are great for reading stories too…

2. Become a “talking family.”

I know that after a long day at home or at work, it can be quite tiring to even consider talking more… It is definitely worth it. Being a “talking family” is similar to committing to being a healthy family, in that, you choose to talk more than the average family and you are intentional about it. Even though it may seem like ONE MORE THING TO DO, it can actually lower the stress levels in your children, and it is one simple way to fill their love tank with words of affirmation. 

Something like this: 

“How was your day, darling?” 

“It was fine, but I hurt myself.”  

“Well, I know how brave you are, but tell me what happened…” 

How much better do you feel after shows you or tells you how important your feelings are?

Now, this is the fun part- the more your children hear you speak, guess what happens? Their vocabulary will improve over time and they will be exposed to more words. It makes sense doesn’t it?

3.Use subtitles with ALL screen time, including and not limited to FAMILY MOVIE NIGHTS. Even if your other half complains… 

Now, I am sure you have heard this one before. But I promise you, it really works…even on adults. Even though subtitles can be a little distracting, you are normalising reading. For new readers, this is helpful because the more words they see, the more words they will see. Make sense? It also means that if your children see words they do not understand, they can ask you. Watching TV then becomes interactive, engaging, and guilt free for you.  

I am not suggesting that we let our children watch television all day, but what I am saying is that we can use almost every opportunity to help our children learn to read.

4.Look out for how words are used around the house, to and from home and daily. 

Words are everywhere, cereal boxes, recipe books, ingredients list, receipts, bus stops, names of roads… I could go on.

The exciting part is that as go about your day with your little ones, you can share what you know.  This will put them at ease an actually help you build bridges for more conversations about learning later on. What we want is to have our children becoming more and more confident in how they express themselves through speech. We can actually make it easier for them, by modelling (showing them how it is done) and by avoiding telling them to…”Keep quiet!”

5.Keep using your home language (especially if English is not your first language) and compare its counterparts in English. “Hast du hunger? “Are you hungry?” Hunger=hungry.

This is a serious amount of fun if you love words and you are willing to share another language with your child at home. I think we sometimes worry that children will be overwhelmed by lots of different words or languages, but the most important thing is to adapt your language to your child’s level of understanding. If your child is only using 3-4 words, then meet them where there are and then extend their sentences: for example,

Milo: Milo hungry.

Mum: Milo is hungry. Where is Milo?

(if your child can respond by saying: here he is OR I’m here)

Response 1: Milo is over there. Milo is hungry.

Response 2: I’m here. (You can the model- I’m hungry)

This could actually become a little name until your child is able to respond correctly.

How is this related to languages? Well… if you do speak another language, then you could teach them how to say: I am hungry.

I am hungry (English)  =Ich habe Hunger  (German)

Now, I know this is not for everyone, but it is definitely worth exploring if you are a linguaphile.

That’s for today!


But I would love to hear from you! Tell me how you got on with reading or speaking this week.

Leave a positive comment below.

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Visit our book shop and top on resources I would recommend Phonics Flash Cards for early language development (English).

Have a great week.

Lulu x

Teaching Mums Ltd

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